President Trump announced on Thursday that he’s nominated Kristjen Nielsen as the Secretary of Homeland Security. Nielsen’s appointment would fill the place left empty by John Kelly, who is now the Chief of Staff.
President Trump highlighted the fact that Nielsen has previously served at the DHS. She was the chief of staff there for John Kelly before following him to the White House, reported ABC News.
Since Nielsen entered the White House, she’s worked as an assistant to the president and the principal deputy chief of staff. Now, President Trump would like her to lead the DHS because of her broad experience.
"Ms. Nielsen has extensive professional experience in the areas of homeland security policy and strategy, cybersecurity, critical infrastructure, and emergency management," read a statement from the White House.
In the press conference, President Trump also noted that Nielsen is the “first nominee for this position to have previously worked within the Department of Homeland Security."
During the announcement, he also highlighted the fact that she wouldn’t need much time to adjust to the new position.
"At this crucial time, we need the Senate to confirm a secretary of Homeland Security, one who is ready to lead on Day 1," Trump said. "Kirstjen has my full faith and confidence, and she also has the complete confidence of the law enforcement officers, dedicated professionals and senior leadership at the Department of Homeland Security."
He added, “There will be no on the job training for Kirstjen.”
After Kelly moved to the White House, Elaine Duke was named acting DHS secretary. She has been coordinating the department's efforts in the wake of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria. She’s also dealt with the aftermath of the largest mass shooting in modern American history.
However, she’s been criticized for how she dealt with the hurricanes. She was especially faulted for the situation in Puerto Rico, which she called a “good news story,” reported ABC News.
Nielsen seems to have support in Washington. Andrew Howell, a lobbyist with Monument Policy Group who has worked with Nielsen on a range of homeland, says she has a lot of experience.
"She has particularly strong expertise on a huge issue facing our nation—cyber security—which differentiates her from any prior Secretary," Howell told ABC News.
Before Nielsen worked at the DHS, she consulted on homeland security and preparedness. She also worked as a special assistant to the president for prevention, preparedness, and response on the White House Homeland Security Council under President George W. Bush. Additionally, she launched the Offices of Legislative Policy and Government Affairs at the Transportation Security Administration.
Congratulations to Ms. Nielsen. It will be interesting to see if Senate confirms her appointment. In other news, Christians are reacting to how President Trump handled a pro-LGBTQ UN agency.