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November 10, 2017

Thompson Statement on Reports of White House Political Interference of DHS

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on news reports of White House interference with Department of Homeland Security policy and operations:

“If true, the Washington Post report exposes a constellation of problems with how both John Kelly and this White House operate. Their penchant for political maneuvering over substantive policymaking is truly shameful. The Department of Homeland Security's leadership should not be subjected to constant political interference from the White House.

"With the nomination of Kirstjen Nielsen to be the sixth Secretary of Homeland Security pending in the Senate, it is incumbent upon Senators to ensure that the nominee, who currently reports to John Kelly, does not intend to continue taking orders from the former general. I also urge my Senate colleagues to diligently probe her with respect to plans for Temporary Protective Status immigrants. If the reporting is correct about Acting Secretary Elaine Duke's planning to leave DHS in light of the challenges of working in the Trump Administration, it would be a great loss to both DHS and the country.”

“Finally, this unsettling incident, on the heels of Kelly's praise for General Robert E. Lee and a disgraceful, unfounded attack on my Congressional colleague from Florida, brings into focus a disturbing picture of a man who many of us thought of as the last hope for instilling honor and decency for this White House.”

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Media contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978