The Washington, D.C. political establishment and beltway class are praising their close ally, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, as she oversees a surge in illegal immigration and implements an expansion of the Catch and Release program.
In a glowing piece by Politico, Nielsen received repeated praise for “standing strong” and circumventing President Trump’s criticism of her role as DHS secretary, where she has overseen a continued surge in illegal immigration while focusing her agency’s attention on cybersecurity issues and terrorism prevention.
“Kirstjen is still standing strong as secretary because she gets results and doesn’t get distracted,” former DHS Chief of Staff for the Bush administration, Chad Sweet, told Politico of Nielsen.
Being in the hot seat for so long brought Nielsen “past the point of giving a crap to please the president or anybody else at the White House,” said a person close to her. [Emphasis added]
“It took her awhile to hit her stride,” said a former DHS official. “But she’s now living her life just fine in DC and everything has totally calmed down.” [Emphasis added]
In one portion of the Politico write-up, allies of Nielsen’s characterized her as wanting the job to run DHS in order to ensure that none of Trump’s “America First” advocates were given the position.
“Nielsen began her job with the view ‘that somebody competent’ needed to run DHS rather than letting Trump install a secretary far outside the mainstream, according to a former DHS official,” the Politico piece notes.
By all measures of border crossing data and Catch and Release levels, Nielsen’s record at DHS has been dismal. For example, when January 2018 illegal border crossings are compared to January 2019 numbers, the level of illegal immigration year-to-year has nearly doubled.
Most recently, for February, illegal immigration at the southern border hit the highest level for the month in 12 years, surpassing every month of February under former President Obama. Now, experts predict there to be up to half a million illegal aliens who successfully cross into the country this year, alone.
Likewise, Nielsen has consistently privately advocated for spending bills that have provided little-to-no funds for Trump’s proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall to stop illegal immigration.
Last month, Nielsen did little to stop the signing of a spending bill by Trump that expanded the Catch and Release program, where illegal aliens are readily caught by federal immigration officials and then released into the interior of the country.
Nielsen also failed to speak up about the spending bill’s provision that cripples federal immigration officials’ ability to deport illegal aliens who have any relation with Unaccompanied Alien Children (UACs).
DHS has continued mass releasing illegal aliens into the interior of the U.S. since at least the beginning of the year. In the first few weeks of this year, Nielsen’s DHS released more than 2,000 border crossers into the U.S.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.