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October 11, 2019

Chairman Thompson Statement on McAleenan’s Departure From DHS

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on news that Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan has left the Trump Administration:

“Today's ouster of the Acting Secretary further highlights that President Trump continues to decimate the leadership of the Department of Homeland Security.  This will only add to the chaos for a Department where there are chronically too many leadership vacancies and positions held by unconfirmed, ‘acting’ officials.

"DHS is a critical national security department charged with keeping the country safe, but under this Administration, President Trump has forced the Department to stray from its core counterterrorism mission to be almost singularly focused on his xenophobic and cruel immigration agenda. Trying to run the Department this way has been a failure since day one of this Administration.

"The President must nominate a permanent replacement, whom can be easily approved by the Senate, as soon as possible.  President Trump cannot continue to rely on installing ‘acting’ – and potentially unlawful – figureheads for this critical position. The next Secretary must be able to convey to the American people that the federal government is focused on keeping the country safe from the top threats we face. We know this includes securing our elections from foreign influence, countering domestic terrorism, and ensuring foreign fighters abroad do not come here. The next Secretary must also understand that bowing to President Trump's obsession over a wall and keeping people out is not part of the job description. 

“I look forward to the next Acting Secretary testifying before my Committee on threats to the homeland for a confirmed appearance on October 30.”

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