US Travel applauds confirmation of Kirstjen Nielsen as Homeland Security Secretary

US Travel applauds confirmation of Kirstjen Nielsen as Homeland Security Secretary

US Travel applauds confirmation of Kirstjen Nielsen as Homeland Security Secretary

The Senate on Tuesday confirmed Deputy White House chief of staff Kirstjen Nielsen as President Donald Trump's choice to lead the Department of Homeland Security.

For the first six months of the Trump administration, Nielsen served as chief of staff to then Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, a fact many Republican senators used to endorse her nomination. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), who voted against confirming Nielsen.

Kamala Harris, D-Calif, who voted against Nielsen's nomination, criticized her stances on immigration and the environment, as well as her experience. Some in Congress still have their doubt about the politics behind the move and whether she has what it takes to lead DHS.

She also condemned white nationalism, rejected Islamophobia and promised to make cybersecurity a top priority. "She has yet to acknowledge the overwhelming scientific consensus that human behavior contributes to climate change, even as states like California face the increasing threats of wildfires, floods, and rising sea levels". Ms. Nielsen will be charged with leading the department at a critical time.

But Democrats raised concerns during her confirmation hearing about her lack of leadership experience, noting that DHS is a sprawling agency with roughly 240,000 employees.

Nielsen previously served on George W. Bush's homeland security council.

We have not seen any report about Nielsen's views on the Trump administration's position on whether "Dreamers", as those who qualified for USA residency under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program are often called, should be allowed to stay in the United States.

"Ms. Nielsen has been engaged in counterterrorism, all-hazard risk mitigation, critical infrastructure protection, and response policy from the earliest days of what we now know as homeland security", the former officials wrote in a letter to the Senate Homeland Security Committee. Her confirmation Tuesday gives the White House a DHS chief well-versed in the politics and the policy goals of Trump's immigration enforcement agenda.

The Trump administration announced in September it would end the program, which allows undocumented immigrants brought into the country as children to live and work.

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