Immigration

Here’s what Kirstjen Nielsen said in her resignation letter to President Trump

How Kirstjen Nielsen became the face of Trump’s ‘zero tolerance’ policy

The secretary of homeland security is under increased scrutiny for the Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal border crossings and the decision to separate children from their parents. Here’s how she arrived at this moment.
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The secretary of homeland security is under increased scrutiny for the Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal border crossings and the decision to separate children from their parents. Here’s how she arrived at this moment.

Kirstjen Nielsen, the Department of Homeland Security Secretary unexpectedly resigned Sunday.

The move came about a week after she had blasted a letter to Congress pleading that they allocate funds to increase the number of beds at existing immigrant detention centers, as well as expand the number of temporary shelters.

In the four-page letter, Nielsen called the “situation” at the border a “system-wide meltdown,” and said U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents are so overwhelmed that they still have children in their custody because proper shelters are to capacity.

Although Sunday’s resignation letter doesn’t say exactly why she chose to resign, it does mention the national “discourse” regarding America’s borders.

“I hereby resign from the position of Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), effective April 7th 2019,” Nielsen wrote. “Despite our progress in reforming homeland security for a new age, I have determined that it is the right time for me to step aside. I hope that 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.”

Nielsen continued: “Our country - and the men and women of DHS - deserve to have all the tools and resources they need to execute the mission entrusted to them.”

President Donald Trump visited a section of the border wall in Calexico, CA on April 5, 2019.

The Department of Homeland Security provided the Miami Herald with a full copy of the letter, which you can read here:

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Monique O. Madan covers immigration and enterprise; she previously covered breaking news and local government. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and The Dallas Morning News. She is currently a 2018-2019 Reveal Fellow at the Center for Investigative Reporting. She graduated from Miami Dade College and Emerson College in Boston.

A note to tipsters: If you want to send Monique O. Madan confidential information, her email and mailbox are open. The address is 3511 NW 91st Ave, Doral, FL 33172. You can also direct message her on social media and she’ll provide encrypted Signal details.


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