Trump’s Pick to Run DHS Allied with ‘Never Trump’ National Security Establishment

Tom Ridge, George Bush TOM MIHALEKAFPGetty Images

President Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) not only previously worked alongside national security establishment figures who aligned themselves with the failed “Never Trump” movement, – she has also been endorsed by members of the defunct group.

Kirstjen Nielsen, a former official under President George W. Bush, was chosen by Trump to replace Acting DHS Secretary Elaine Duke, who has been influential in moving forward on an initiative to construct a border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Allied with Nielsen are members of the failed Never Trump effort, many of whom penned open letters during the 2016 presidential election claiming Trump was “unfit” to serve as Commander in Chief.

For instance, former Bush official Tom Ridge has praised Nielsen, calling her a “homeland security veteran” to the Washington Post and heaping more praise on her in the New York Times, where he called her “a patriot.”

Ridge, though, was one of 95 Republican establishment former national security officials who signed a letter opposing Trump in 2016 for his “America First” agenda.

Before signing the Never Trump letter, Ridge took it upon himself to publicly label Trump an “embarrassment” to the United States, opposing his then-proposed travel ban from foreign nations that have a history of exporting Islamic terrorists.

Following Trump’s historic victory, Ridge — a longtime amnesty advocate who has aligned himself with the pro-cheap labor wing of the Republican Party — continued to oppose Trump’s promises to secure the southern border.

In January, Ridge told U.S. News that he preferred “a president who’ll tear down a wall rather than build one, but he’s determined to build it.”

Former Bush official Frances Townsend, a close ally of Nielsen and advocate of amnesty for illegal aliens, has additionally praised her nomination to head DHS. But Townsend, before Trump’s election, became part of the Never Trump movement in the Washington, D.C. beltway.

Townsend’s said Neilsen is “tough as nails” and “competent,” but shared harsher words for Trump before his victory in 2016.

For instance, in 2016 Townsend went as far as to openly oppose Trump’s pro-American candidacy, signing on to a letter with 94 other Washington, D.C., establishment figures and former Bush administration officials that claimed he was “so utterly unfitted to the office.”

Like Ridge, Townsend opposed Trump’s travel ban in 2015, claiming that by not accepting refugees from a number of Middle Eastern countries, the plan would alienate Muslims around the world.

“The other thing is our diplomats and military get put at risk because they represent the U.S. in these Arab countries,” Townsend told CBS News at the time.

“Here in this country, it is incredibly important that we not alienate our Muslim friends here in the United States and around the world,” Townsend said.

Nielsen’s endorsement by Never Trump signatories is coupled with her endorsement by advocates of illegal immigration and mass immigration for the sake of cheap, foreign labor for multinational corporations and big businesses, as Breitbart News reported.

Most recently, Breitbart News reported on Nielsen’s involvement with the Bush administration’s response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, when more than 30,000 illegal aliens and foreign workers were able to come to the U.S. to take American blue-collar jobs that those devastated by the natural disaster had hoped to get.

Following Katrina, 1.5 million Americans were displaced by the storm, and the easing of labor laws by the Bush administration left many looking for work outside of the Gulf Coast, since illegal aliens and foreign workers quickly dominated the paid clean-up effort.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.


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