Trouble is certainly on the horizon. Fresh off his basketball tour of Puerto Rico and threats to pull federal help, Donald Trump announced his new Homeland Security nominee, Kirstjen Nielsen. Politico writes:
“At this crucial time, we need the Senate to confirm a secretary of Homeland Security, one who is ready to lead on Day One,” 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.”
Nielsen served as Kelly’s top aide during his time at the agency and became his principal deputy chief of staff when he joined the West Wing as chief of staff this summer.
Kelly “would be the first to tell you she was critical to his success,” Trump said. At DHS, “she quickly reinforced a sterling reputation as a dedicated leader whose No. 1 priority is always the safety and security of our country and the citizens. Not politics.”
“There will be no on-the-job training for Kirstjen,” he said.
To be fair, Trump knows quite a lot about “on-the-job” training and how wrong it can go. But if Nielsen was as instrumental at DHS as Trump says, then we know that she helped weaponize the agency against people of color and immigrant communities. And since leaving DHS for the West Wing, she appears to have drunk the Kool-Aid on the administration’s Puerto Rico Response.
“In recent weeks communities across our nation have been struck by natural disasters of historic proportions,” [Nielsen] said after her nomination. “Americans have seen the devotion of this department and the extraordinary team at DHS, who along with our federal, state, local, and territorial partners have been working around the clock to provide supplies and save lives.”