The Senate has voted 62-37 on Tuesday and has confirmed Kirstjen Nielsen as the new Homeland Security secretary, Politico informs.
Nielsen, who most recently was the deputy to the White House chief of staff John Kelly, will assume this position at the department with more than 240,000 employees and a sweeping mission. In addition to its anti-terror function, DHS is the agency behind President Donald Trump’s controversial immigration crackdown, and it will play a key role in deciding the fate of so-called DREAMers brought to the U.S. as children.
Nielsen is a proven cyber-security expert who previously worked in the George W. Bush administration and at the Transportation Security Administration. During her confirmation process, she received the support of the top Republican senators and former DHS secretaries Tom Ridge and Michael Chertoff.
Several Democrats questioned her work experience and independence from John Kelly, her former boss at the White House and DHS.