Trump's US Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen resigns | #TheCube

Trump's US Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen resigns | #TheCube

FILE PHOTO - Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen (C) and commissioner for Customs and Border Patrol Kevin McAleenan (L) walk with U.S. President Donald Trump during a visit to a section of the border wall in Calexico California, U.S., April 5, 2019.

While she did not say exactly why she is quitting, Nielsen wrote she hopes the next secretary "will have the support of Congress and the courts in fixing the laws which have impeded our ability to fully secure America's borders and which have contributed to discord in our nation's discourse". But it's unclear if he can have much more of an effect on the issues at the border.

In a subsequent tweet, Trump announced that Kevin McAleenan - commissioner of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) - would take over the agency in an acting capacity.

Prior to becoming DHS secretary, Nielsen was Kelly's chief of staff at the agency - which has an annual budget of more than $40 billion and employs almost a quarter of a million people in multiple subdivisions.

Mr. Trump and Stephen Miller, his top immigration adviser, have privately but regularly complained about Ms. Nielsen. Nielsen oversaw Trump's "zero tolerance" family separation policy and came under fire by Democrats for lying to Congress about the policy, as well as for withholding information on children who died in USA custody. "That she is reportedly resigning because she is not extreme enough for the White House's liking is deeply alarming".

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Many prominent Democrats have weighed in on Nielsen's departure, with 2020 candidates and senators Cory Booker and Kamala Harris issuing similar sentiments on Twitter, highlighting Nielsen's controversial policies.

That included the widely condemned practice of separating migrant children from their parents as part of a "zero tolerance" policy of prosecuting all illegal border crossers.

"Nielsen will go down in history as presiding over an exceptionally cruel regime that separated families and violated human rights", Jayapal said. She told a Senate committee that removing children from parents facing criminal charges happens "in the United States every day".

The sources told CNN the president also wanted families separated even if they were apprehended within the USA, in order to deter other migrants from entering.

On Friday, he called for Congress to "get rid of the whole asylum system" and get rid of immigration judges, and criticized a long-standing federal court decree mandating certain standards of care for migrant children. Right now there is space for about 3,000 families, and facilities are at capacity. The Department of Homeland Security secretary has a lot of responsibility. A protege of Kelly's, he brought her to the White House after Trump named him chief of staff.

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