We would not be surprised to find out this report is either accurate or slightly incorrect. It is entirely possible that President Trump may also keep Elaine Duke as DHS head and appoint Kirstjen Neilsen as Duke’s deputy. Obviously President Trump will keenly weigh former DHS head and current CoS John Kelly’s thoughts on both candidates.
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is expected to nominate his chief of staff’s deputy, Kirstjen Nielsen, as his next secretary of Homeland Security.
That’s according to four people familiar with the decision, including two administration officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about a personnel decision before it was officially announced. While two of those people cautioned that the president could always change his mind before a formal announcement, the others said the decision was slated to be announced formally Thursday.
Nielsen was John Kelly’s deputy when he served as Trump’s first DHS secretary and moved with Kelly to the White House when he was tapped to be Trump’s chief of staff. She is an expert in homeland and national security policy and previously served as a special assistant to former President George W. Bush and worked for the Transportation Security Administration.
Elaine Duke has been filling in as acting secretary of the department. But she raised eyebrows when she described the aftermath of Hurricane Maria as a “good news story.”
Neither the White House nor Nielsen responded to requests for comment on the plans, which were first reported by Politico. (read more)