Secretary Nielsen Almost Resigned After Tense Cabinet Meeting

Here's what Homeland Security chief said about report that Trump 'berated' her over immigration

President Donald Trump berated Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen for not doing enough to secure the borders at Wednesday's Cabinet meeting, according to a source who was there.

The exchange was so hostile, according to The New York Times, that Nielsen later informed colleagues that she planned to leave the administration and drafted a resignation letter, though she did not submit it.

The president's eruption was witnessed by Cabinet members plus a number of senior White House officials - including counselor Kellyanne Conway, advisers Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, immigration adviser Stephen Miller and chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow.

Nielsen said in a statement that Trump "is rightly frustrated" on border security issues.

"The @nytimes article alleging that the Secretary drafted a resignation letter yesterday and was close to resigning is false", tweeted Homeland Security spokesman Tyler Houlton.

Instead, she told the newspaper that she will "continue to direct the department to do all we can to implement the president's security-focused agenda" as head of almost 20,000 department employees.

A recent target of the president has been a migrant caravan traveling from South America to the US border.

Nielsen also released a statement in wake of the incident where she said she shared the president's frustrations but didn't exactly deny the fact she penned her resignation.




Donald Trump had grown angry in recent weeks for reports of a roughly 1,200-person "caravan" of asylum-seekers from Central America traveling toward the USA border.

More than 10,000 of those 30,000 total cases of credible fear occurred when foreign nationals arrived at the ports of entry at the southern border, while more than 20,000 of the cases occurred when foreign nationals sought asylum by crossing the border illegally.

The New York Times reported Thursday that the president has growing increasingly angry with Nielsen over what he feels is the country's inability to adequately secure its border.

Just to be clear, Nielsen and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) under her direction haven't shown any hesitation about separating families.

"Border security is the most basic and necessary responsibility of a sovereign nation", she continued.

Trump believes Nielsen and other DHS officials are resisting directives that parents be separated from their children when families cross illegally into the United States, to deter them from entering, the newspaper said, citing the officials. He has also threatened to shut down the government by September 2018 if the Congress does not approve funding to make good on his campaign promise to build a wall on the southern US border with Mexico. According to the Times, Mr. Trump berated Nielsen in front of the entire cabinet on Wednesday.

Trump has been a long critic of the current immigration system.

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