Success! Noted Baby Incarcerator Kirstjen Nielsen Resigns as Head of DHS

Good news! Kirstjen Nielsen — subject of multiple Care2 petitions and tens of thousands of signatures — has stepped down from her post as secretary of Homeland Security, adding another entry to the long list of Trump administration officials who have resigned (or been asked to do so).

Notable accomplishments during her tenure included sexual abuse of immigrant children in detention facilities; multiple deaths in custody; a rising rate of miscarriages in detention; lying; corruption; missing childrenmore lying; and, of course, lying.

According to multiple reports, Nielsen resigned after a meeting with the president — allegedly because she wasn’t willing to go as far as he wanted when it came to wanton cruelty on the border. That’s right: Someone who made herself famous for overseeing unspeakable violations of human rights and dignity was, apparently, not cruel enough for the president.

It’s a telling sign that Donald Trump wants to present himself as an immigration hardliner — as he’s screaming about immigration on Twitter while positioning himself for the 2020 election. Purging the government of officials who aren’t as extreme as he is may help him accomplish that goal. But it could be devastating for immigrants, regardless of legal status, on both sides of the border — especially among those who are incarcerated.

This move may be part of a larger “restructuring” of key immigration roles in the Trump administration. Rumors suggest the agency’s general counsel will also be pushed out of his job, as will the head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. And the administration just withdrew its nominee to head Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Insiders say other high-level civil servants may be removed, as well, paving the way for a significant change in leadership that could gut the agency of institutional knowledge.

Lest you think Nielsen’s resignation is a moral stand, it’s important to note her opinions on immigration were clearly radicalized in the Trump administration. And she was an active enabler of his hateful policy agenda. Even if she did go to the White House looking for “a path forward,” as reported in The New York Times, the path she had already trodden was not a pleasant one. If she truly felt the administration’s policies and practices were unconscionable, she should have drawn that particular line long ago — and she had ample opportunities to do so.

She did throw the agency into a leadership crisis, as there’s no deputy director available to run it until Trump can nominate a replacement to go through the confirmation process. If this sounds familiar to you, it should. The Trump administration has relied heavily on acting directors to run government agencies, using this tactic to install people he thinks will be easier for him to control. These ostensibly temporary appointments also aren’t subject to Senate confirmation, so lawmakers and the American people do not have an opportunity to determine whether they’re fit for the job.

Republicans like to claim these staffing problems are due to “Democratic obstructionism,” but that’s just not true. Democrats can’t vote on a nominee if none has been provided. And the Republicans have successfully rammed through confirmation hearings and votes on most of Trump’s nominees — with the exception of a handful so egregious that even Mitch McConnell couldn’t force them through.

As Nielsen clears out her office, she may find herself with a soft landing as a political pundit, lobbyist or adviser.

Here’s hoping she’s not planning to go out for Mexican food to celebrate.

Photo credit: Presidencia de la República Mexicana/Creative Commons

65 comments

Shirley B
Shirley Blome2 months ago

As a Republican I disagree with this. Obama was the one who caged these children and no one said a word. What was Kirstjen supposed to do, throw them in the street? Think before you put your mouth in motion before you put your brain in gear which happens to most people lately. Wise up.

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Sabrina D
Sabrina Degasperi2 months ago

Ok, great.

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Leopold Marek
Leopold Marek3 months ago

Tyfs

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Leopold Marek
Leopold Marek3 months ago

Tyfs

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David F
David F3 months ago

heather g. I enjoy exposing the other side of the propaganda prevalent from the mass of Fake News victims. Sun-lite on every issue is good for the "enlightened".

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Paul B
Paul B3 months ago

Rhoberta, actually, I believe the law says they must seek asylum in the first country they can... and that would be Mexico. I don't believe that they have a right to go anywhere in the world to seek asylum. Prove me wrong, but I think I'm right.
So technically, they DON'T have the right to come here from Central America and claim asylum without due process.

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heather g
heather g3 months ago

David F. as an ultra-conservative who enjoys fighting with more enlightened people, what on earth are you doing on this site?

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Leo Custer
Leo C3 months ago

Thank you for sharing!

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Rhoberta E
Rhoberta E3 months ago

david f
You really should get out more and put down your guns. (you're scaring your "PET DEER"
trump's inference was that those deaths happened very recently and NOT over time. Even you with your low information brain can figure just how he embellishes everything he says.
I'm not OKAY with any deaths. Are YOU okay with how trump and his stooges are treating asylum seekers who by international law are entitled to seek asylum? Oh, I almost forgot. trump thinks he is above the law (maybe like you) and the rule of law doesn't apply to him or his kiddies.
Then your dumb statement about applying in their own country when your hero has cut off aide like the true "hero" he is. I'll just bet those impoverished men, women and CHILDREN would like food and shelter too.
I know compassion isn't a word you're familiar with but maybe you could look it up in a dictionary.

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David F
David F3 months ago

RHoberta, yea another lie from Trump, he said a thousand when there was 1671. So how many deaths in the desert are you OK with?

Pelosi could stop the majority of the illegal immigration problems in 45 minutes.
First, require amnesty applicants to apply at the US embassy in their own country, then build the wall.

She won’t, because it would stop millions of future socialist voters, reducing the dependency on Government and power of the ruling class.

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