Senate confirms new DHS chief

Senate confirms new DHS chief

Kirstjen Nielsen was sworn in Wednesday as secretary of the Department Homeland Security after she received Senate confirmation the day prior by a vote of 62-37.

A confirmation vote on her nomination is expected later this week, the report added. "I am confident that Kirstjen's mission-focused style of leadership will help her succeed in leading the men and women of DHS and ensuring we reform and improve the Department", said McCaul.

"By confirming Ms. Nielsen's nomination to lead the DHS, this Senate will take a serious step to strengthen our nation's security", Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky said in a statement.

Some Democrats, on the other hand, complained Nielsen lacks the experience needed to run a major agency, and cited concerns over Trump administration policy.

Nielsen's "work in and around the department since its creation, as well as her knowledge of cybersecurity, risk management and critical infrastructure, should serve her well in confronting the daunting threats to our homeland", said Sen.

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Nielsen said at her confirmation hearing last month that climate change is a crucial issue and said the Trump administration is revising its climate models to better respond to rising sea levels. She previously was the White House's deputy chief of staff where she was widely considered a close Kelly ally. They also cited concerns about possible White House interference in a recent DHS decision to send home thousands of Nicaraguans and Haitians long granted US protection.

Early in her career she worked at the Transportation Security Administration and then as a White House adviser for emergency preparedness and disaster management under President George W. Bush.

Nielsen's appointment comes after President Donald Trump nominated her to replace former boss John Kelly, who moved to become Trump's chief of staff. But Nielsen told the Senate's homeland security panel that "there is no need for a wall from sea to shining sea".

Trump pledged during his presidential campaign to build a U.S-Mexico border wall.

Her position will also drop her into the middle of multiple immigration fights, as senators debate how to address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

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