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Biden ’s Homeland Security:

    WASHINGTON - The Biden administration has declined to comment on whether Temporary Protected Status (TPS) will be extended for Haitians. “By law, TPS designations are made by the Department of Homeland Security after consultation with the appropriate agencies,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price told VOA. “So, we wouldn’t want to comment on any sort of internal deliberations when it comes to TPS.” TPS is a designation made by the secretary of homeland security to individuals from countries severely impacted by natural disasters or armed conflicts. It allows beneficiaries to live and work in the United States for a period of time. The TPS status Haitians currently hold was enacted by the Obama administration on January 21, 2010, nine days after a massive 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit the island nation, killing at least 250,000 people and displacing 5 million others. In October 2020, then-candidate Joe Biden made a campaign stop in...
    WASHINGTON - The Biden administration has declined to comment on whether Temporary Protected Status (TPS) will be extended for Haitians.  “By law, TPS designations are made by the Department of Homeland Security after consultation with the appropriate agencies,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price told VOA. “So, we wouldn’t want to comment on any sort of internal deliberations when it comes to TPS.”  TPS is a designation made by the secretary of homeland security to individuals from countries severely impacted by natural disasters or armed conflicts. It allows beneficiaries to live and work in the United States for a period of time.  The TPS status Haitians currently hold was enacted by the Obama administration on January 21, 2010, nine days after a massive 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit the island nation, killing at least 250,000 people and displacing 5 million others.  In October 2020, then-candidate Joe Biden made a campaign stop in the Little Haiti neighborhood of Miami, Florida, where he courted...
    US Customs and Border Protection is sending additional agents to the Mexican border in response to a mounting migration crisis. The agency, which includes the Border Patrol, said in a Monday statement that the agents will be arriving to help address a spike in apprehensions, including of unaccompanied children. “Due to fluctuations along the Southwest Border, U.S. Customs and Border Protection is deploying additional Border Patrol agents to the Rio Grande Valley Sector area of operation,” the agency said in a statement. Hundreds of agents may be redeployed from assignments along the US coasts and the northern border with Canada, the New York Times reported. The Biden administration is dealing with a significant uptick in border apprehensions, with Republicans accusing President Biden of sparking the surge by relaxing some of former President Donald Trump’s policies. In January, which featured the final weeks of Trump’s term and the start of Biden’s,...
    Washington — The surging number of unaccompanied minors crossing the U.S.-Mexico border has posed a "stressful challenge" for the Biden administration, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas acknowledged Monday, while insisting that the influx of undocumented children has not reached a "crisis" level.  "Quite frankly, we are working as hard as we are, not only in addressing the urgency of the challenge, but also in building the capacity to manage it," the newly confirmed secretary said in his debut appearance at the White House press briefing. U.S. officials along the southern border took roughly 2,000 migrant children into custody last week, according to government data reviewed by CBS News. Nearly 400 children were taken into custody on Friday alone. In January, the last month for which statistics are available, the Office of Refugee Resettlement received more than 4,000 unaccompanied children from immigration officials, a 19% increase from December. In his remarks,...
    The Biden administration will allow separated migrant families the option of being reunified either in the United States or their county of origin, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said on Monday.  'We are hoping to reunite the families, either here or in the country of origin. We hope to be in a position to give them the election,' Mayorkas said during the daily White House press briefing.  If the families choose to be reunited in the United States, the administration would look to help them remain in the country.  'If, in fact, they seek to reunite here in the United States, we will explore lawful pathways for them to remain in the United States, and to address the family needs, so we are acting as restoratively as possible,' he added.  The Biden administration will allow separated migrant families the option of being reunified either in the United States or...
    (CNN)The Biden administration could reunite migrant families separated at the US-Mexico border under former President Donald Trump in the United States, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said Monday. Mayorkas, who's leading the family reunification task force established by President Joe Biden, said the administration hopes to reunite separated families in the US or in their country of origin. "We hope to be in a position to give them the election. And if in fact they seek to reunite here in the United States, we will explore lawful pathways for them to remain in the United States and address the family needs," he said. The Biden administration is relying on a Trump-era policy to turn away migrants at borderThe administration is working closely with counsel for separated families, along with other partners, to chart a path forward. "We are doing it along with the countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras...
    Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants to dissolve the Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Department of Homeland Security in a massive overhaul to the immigration system after it was revealed Joe Biden reopened facilities for housing unaccompanied minors arriving at the border. 'It's only 2 [months] into this admin & our fraught, unjust immigration system will not transform in that time,' the New York progressive representative posted to Twitter Tuesday evening. 'That's why bold reimagination is so [important.]' She asserted: 'DHS shouldn't exist, agencies should be reorganized, ICE gotta go, ban for-profit detention, create climate refugee status & more.' The far-left congresswoman is also pushing a proposal by fellow Democratic Representative Pramila Jayapal demanding the U.S. let in refugees fleeing an area due to climate change – known as 'climate refugees'. AOC blasted the administration for reopening a temporary influx center for unaccompanied minors in Carrizo Springs, Texas and another shelter in Miami,...
    The Department of Homeland Security on Tuesday moved to scrap a contract signed at the tail end of the Trump administration that could have allowed a union of deportation officers to stall the implementation of certain immigration policy changes. The agreement, signed the day before President Biden's inauguration by Ken Cuccinelli, the second-in-command at DHS at the time, gave a union representing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation officers the ability to "indefinitely delay" the implementation of agency policies, according to a whistle-blower complaint filed by the Government Accountability Project. The complaint, filed earlier this month, said the contract would effectively grant AFGE National ICE Council 118, a 7,500-member organization that twice endorsed former President Donald Trump, "veto authority" over certain policy-making at ICE. "The agreements grant NIC 118 extraordinary power and benefits — far more than what DHS agreed upon with its other employee unions which did not...
    President Joe Biden continues rapidly dismantling former President Donald Trump’s effort to secure the U.S. border with Mexico, announcing on Friday he will reverse Trump’s Remain in Mexico policy for migrants seeking refugee status and will admit at least 25,000 people into the country. And not only will thousands of migrants be allowed into the interior of the country, but they will be released into American communities to await legal proceedings. Biden’s policy also flies in the face of border detention policy from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that calls for the swift return of migrants to their home country to protect Americans from further exposure to the coronavirus. “Beginning on February 19 the Department of Homeland security will take steps to begin processing individuals who under the previous administration, had been forced to remain in Mexico,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Friday. ABC7...
    Around 25,000 asylum-seekers who were ordered under former President Donald Trump to wait in Mexico while U.S. immigration courts processed their requests will now be allowed to cross the border starting next week, the Biden administration announced Friday.  The Department of Homeland Security said the change in plans for those currently placed in Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) -- often referred to as "Remain in Mexico" -- will go into effect on Feb. 19. The Trump administration introduced the policy in January 2019 and said it was critical to reversing a surge of asylum-seekers that peaked that year.  "As President Biden has made clear, the U.S. government is committed to rebuilding a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system," Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement. "This latest action is another step in our commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation’s values."  In this August 2019 photo, migrants -- many of whom were returned to Mexico under the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico"...
    JOE Biden is set to allow 25,000 asylum seekers from Mexico to flood into the United States next week while they wait for hearings. The first group with active cases will be allowed in the United States on February 19, authorities said. 5Joe Biden is set to allow asylum seekers into the United StatesCredit: Splash News They plan to start slowly with two border crossings each processing up to 300 people a day and a third crossing taking fewer. Administration officials declined to name them out of fear they may encourage a rush of people to those locations. The move is a major step toward dismantling one of former President Donald Trump’s most consequential policies to deter asylum seekers from coming to the US. About 70,000 asylum seekers were enrolled in “Remain in Mexico,” officially called “Migrant Protection Protocols,” since it was introduced in January 2019. 5They...
    The Biden administration will begin allowing Central American asylum seekers who had been forced to remain in Mexico into the United States to have their claims heard. The Department of Homeland Security announced Friday that starting Feb. 19, the thousands of migrants who had been forced to wait in Mexico for months under the Trump administration's Migrant Protection Protocols will be allowed into the U.S. for processing. Approximately 25,000 asylum seekers have open, undecided cases and will be brought in. “As President Biden has made clear, the U.S. government is committed to rebuilding a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system,” said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. “This latest action is another step in our commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation’s values. Especially at the border, however, where capacity constraints remain serious, changes will take time." This is a developing story. News Biden Administration Joe...
    The Biden administration is not allowing U.S. Customs and Border Protection to return unaccompanied children at the southern border to Mexico despite a court order that allowed it, two people with knowledge of the situation told the Washington Examiner. The Department of Homeland Security "made a policy decision not to," one of the people said. On Jan. 29, just over a week into the Biden administration, a three-member panel of circuit court judges in Washington, D.C., halted a lower court decision that had blocked children from being removed, a practice that had been taking place since March 2020. Despite the panel's decision in favor of CBP, the Department of Homeland Security told immigration and border agencies that they would not be permitted to continue turning back children to Mexico and other countries of origin. Approximately 300 unaccompanied minors have been encountered at the border daily in recent weeks....
    Neera Tanden, President Biden's nominee for budget chief, is set to face an old foe at her second confirmation hearing Wednesday: Bernie Sanders. Tanden, widely considered to be Biden's most vulnerable nominee, addressed the first major hurdle to her confirmation Tuesday by apologizing for her past social media remarks during her first hearing. But on Wednesday, she'll go head to head with the Vermont senator with whom she publicly clashed during his unsuccessful 2016 and 2020 White House campaigns. Sanders chairs the Senate Budget Committee, which has jurisdiction over confirming the White House's Office of Management and Budget director with the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Sanders and his allies have long been openly hostile toward Tanden. They believe Tanden, an alumna of former President Bill Clinton's administration and a fierce supporter of Hillary Clinton, used the Center of American Progress, of which she was president and CEO,...
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Homeland Security chief Alejandro Mayorkas, who last week became the first Latino and immigrant to hold the post, on Saturday reaffirmed his resolve to fight domestic terrorism, one of the greatest threats to the United States. Mayorkas, who served as deputy secretary at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) under President Barack Obama, was sworn after the deadly Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol by supporters of outgoing Republican President Donald Trump. "To see the insurrection, to see the horrific acts of Jan. 6 were not only personally devastating, but ... that created in me a commitment to redouble our efforts to fight hate and to fight one of the greatest threats that we face currently on our homeland, which is the threat of domestic terrorism," Mayorkas told CNN in an interview that aired Saturday evening. Mayorkas also said the Biden administration was working with...
    Two senior White House officials sidestepped questions Thursday about whether President Biden would direct the Department of Homeland Security to phase out its use of privately run immigration detention facilities, which was a campaign pledge. "We're not going to get ahead of the DHS decision-making process," press secretary Jen Psaki said, pointing to a separate immigration order in which Biden called for a "review" of asylum programs and measures. Biden issued an executive order last month calling on the Department of Justice to cease new contracts with private prisons but did not extend his directive to the facilities operating under the purview of the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, where most illegal immigrants are held. "He has spoken about his concern about these facilities in the past," but action "is under the purview of the Department of Homeland Security to make recommendations to the president...
    By ANITA SNOW and BEN FOX, Associated Press PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has terminated an unusual agreement that Arizona’s top prosecutor signed with the agency in the waning days of the Trump administration to try to restrict President Joe Biden's ability to overhaul his predecessor’s immigration policies. The agency's action was revealed Wednesday as Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican, sued to stop newly confirmed Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas from carrying out Biden's 100-day moratorium on deportations. A federal judge in Texas has already put it on hold. “Arizona’s law enforcement community is particularly concerned that aliens who have been charged or convicted of crimes will be released as a result of DHS’s 100-day moratorium," Brnovich said in the federal lawsuit. He said authorities also worry "that releasing individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic will further stress hospitals and social services at the local...
    PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has terminated an unusual agreement that Arizona’s top prosecutor signed with the agency in the waning days of the Trump administration to try to restrict President Joe Biden’s ability to overhaul his predecessor’s immigration policies. The agency’s action was revealed Wednesday as Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican, sued to stop newly confirmed Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas from carrying out Biden’s 100-day moratorium on deportations. A federal judge in Texas has already put it on hold. “Arizona’s law enforcement community is particularly concerned that aliens who have been charged or convicted of crimes will be released as a result of DHS’s 100-day moratorium,” Brnovich said in the federal lawsuit. He said authorities also worry “that releasing individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic will further stress hospitals and social services at the local and county level.” Brnovich sued after...
    (CNN)Domestic terrorism is "one of the greatest threats" to the United States, newly minted Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told CNN on Wednesday, underscoring that the threat persists."To see the insurrection, the horrific acts of January 6, were not only personally devastating, but created in me a commitment to redouble our efforts, to fight hate and to fight one of the greatest threats that we face currently on our homeland, which is the threat of domestic terrorism," Mayorkas said in an interview with CNN's Ana Cabrera that aired on "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer."Biden signs immigration executive orders and establishes task force to reunite separated familiesMayorkas, who was sworn in Tuesday, is the first Senate-confirmed Homeland Security secretary in nearly two years and will oversee the department's sprawling mission, which includes cybersecurity, immigration and Covid-19 response, among many others. He's the first Latino and immigrant to helm the department....
    WASHINGTON - The Senate confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday as President Joe Biden's Homeland Security secretary, the first Latino to fill a post that will have a central role in the government's response to the coronavirus pandemic, a sweeping Russia-linked cyber hack and domestic extremism. Mayorkas was confirmed by a 56-43 vote, the narrowest margin yet for a Biden Cabinet nominee. The first immigrant to serve in the job, he is expected to lead a broad policy overhaul of an agency that was accused of being deeply politicized as it carried out President Donald Trump's initiatives on immigration and law enforcement. Alejandro Mayorkas, U.S. President-elect Joe Biden's nominee to be director of Homeland Security, speaks as President-elect Biden announces his national security nominees and appointees.Mayorkas is a former federal prosecutor who previously served as a senior Department of Homeland Security (DHS) official. His nomination was stalled in the...
    Reuters February 2, 2021 0 Comments -The U.S. Senate on Tuesday confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas to head the Department of Homeland Security, making him the first Latino and immigrant to hold the position and further solidifying President Joe Biden’s Cabinet. The Senate approved Mayorkas despite strong opposition from Republicans. As secretary of the sprawling agency, Mayorkas will oversee a 240,000-employee department responsible for border security, immigration enforcement, cybersecurity and disaster readiness and relief, among other missions. Mayorkas, 61, will also stand at the center of Biden’s attempts to reverse many immigration restrictions put in place by Republican former President Donald Trump. Mayorkas is the sixth of Biden’s Cabinet appointments that require Senate confirmation to be approved. Earlier on Tuesday, the Senate confirmed Pete Buttigieg to be transportation secretary. (Reporting by Richard Cowan and Ted Hesson; Editing by Leslie Adler and Peter Cooney)
    By Ben Fox | Associated Press WASHINGTON — The Senate confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday as President Joe Biden’s homeland security secretary, the first Latino to fill a post that will have a central role in the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, a sweeping Russia-linked cyber hack and domestic extremism. Mayorkas was confirmed by a 56-43 vote, the narrowest margin yet for a Biden Cabinet nominee. The first immigrant to serve in the job, he is expected to lead a broad policy overhaul of an agency that was accused of being deeply politicized as it carried out President Donald Trump’s initiatives on immigration and law enforcement. Mayorkas is a former federal prosecutor who previously served as a senior DHS official. His nomination was stalled in the Senate by Republicans who wanted to question him further on Biden’s plans for immigration policy. He also faced questions over his management of...
    WASHINGTON -- The Senate confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday as President Joe Biden's homeland security secretary, the first Latino to fill a post that will have a central role in the government's response to the coronavirus pandemic, a sweeping Russia-linked cyber hack and domestic extremism.Mayorkas was confirmed by a 56-43 vote, the narrowest margin yet for a Biden Cabinet nominee. The first immigrant to serve in the job, he is expected to lead a broad policy overhaul of an agency that was accused of being deeply politicized as it carried out President Donald Trump's initiatives on immigration and law enforcement.Mayorkas is a former federal prosecutor who previously served as a senior DHS official. His nomination was stalled in the Senate by Republicans who wanted to question him further on Biden's plans for immigration policy. He also faced questions over his management of an investor visa program under President Barack Obama.Biden's...
    Lawmakers on Tuesday confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas as secretary of homeland security, giving the agency its first Senate-confirmed leader since spring 2019 as it confronts a slate of pressing challenges, including domestic terrorism, a widescale cyberattack and a raging pandemic. The Senate voted 56-43 to confirm Mayorkas, making him the first immigrant and first Latino to lead the department, which oversees and enforces U.S. immigration policy. Six Republicans joined Democrats in voting to confirm Mayorkas. [ READ Biden Immigration Orders Review – Not Undo – Controversial Trump Policies ]Mayorkas is expected to begin a long and arduous process of rolling back many Trump administration immigration policies while attempting to rebalance an agency that became increasingly politicized in the last four years and was for the last year and a half led by an official whom multiple federal judges ruled was illegally serving in his position. Mayorkas also faces the formidable task...
    By BEN FOX, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday as President Joe Biden's homeland security secretary, the first Latino to fill a post that will have a central role in the government's response to the coronavirus pandemic, a sweeping Russia-linked cyber hack and domestic extremism. Mayorkas was confirmed by a 56-43 vote, the narrowest margin yet for a Biden Cabinet nominee. The first immigrant to serve in the job, he is expected to lead a broad policy overhaul of an agency that was accused of being deeply politicized as it carried out President Donald Trump’s initiatives on immigration and law enforcement. Mayorkas is a former federal prosecutor who previously served as a senior DHS official. His nomination was stalled in the Senate by Republicans who wanted to question him further on Biden's plans for immigration policy. He also faced questions over his management of...
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A majority of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday voted to confirm Alejandro Mayorkas to head the Department of Homeland Security, meaning he will become the first Latino and immigrant to hold the position and further solidifying President Joe Biden's Cabinet. The vote was continuing in the Senate. (Reporting by Richard Cowan and Ted Hesson; Editing by Leslie Adler) Copyright 2021 Thomson Reuters. Tags: United States
    Alejandro Mayorkas was narrowly confirmed as President Joe Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security on Tuesday. The Senate voted to confirm Mayorkas by a 56-43 vote. Despite being one of Biden’s first Cabinet nominees to receive a hearing and multiple Democrats’ push for him to be quickly confirmed, Mayorkas’s vote was held up by Republicans on multiple occasions. Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley said that he would block an expedited vote after Mayorkas refused during his hearing to commit $1.4 billion in appropriated funds towards former President Donald Trump’s border wall, and last week Republicans said that they would filibuster his confirmation vote. Mayorkas is expected to continue rolling back immigration policies adopted by Trump but will be tasked with juggling the simultaneous responses to the pandemic and heightened risks to national security following the Capitol riot. (RELATED: Mayorkas: ‘New Immigration System’ Is Necessary) Mayorkas previously served as...
    Washington — The Senate on Tuesday approved the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas to become secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), confirming the former federal prosecutor and Obama-era immigration official to lead the department by a vote of 56 to 43. The final tally reflected opposition from some Republican senators to the new administration's immigration policies, as well as concerns about an internal 2015 DHS investigation into Mayorkas' actions as head of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under the Obama administration.  As secretary of the sprawling department, Mayorkas will be tasked with tackling some of the nation's most pressing issues, including the coronavirus pandemic, domestic terrorism, cyberattacks and migration to the U.S. southern border. DHS is responsible for a diverse range of federal functions, ranging from immigration and border policy to transportation security and natural disaster management. A Cuban immigrant who arrived in the U.S. 1960s...
    The Senate on Tuesday confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas as President Biden's homeland security secretary, making him the first immigrant to hold the position -- despite opposition from a number of Republicans to his nomination. Mayorkas, a former head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and deputy Homeland Security secretary, was confirmed 56-43. MCCONNELL RIPS DHS NOMINEE MAYORKAS FOR CREATING AN 'UNETHICAL FAVOR FACTORY FOR DEMOCRATIC ROYALTY' He takes control of the department at a time when it faces the challenge of the continued threat of violence in the wake of the Jan. 6 riots in Washington D.C., as well as the implementation of sweeping immigration changes by the Biden administration. Last month, DHS implemented a 100-day moratorium on deportations of illegal immigrants, but it was immediately hit by a legal challenge from Texas. Biden has ended the Trump-era travel bans and stopped construction of a border wall. He has also proposed...
    (CNN) — The Senate voted to confirm Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary on Tuesday, making him the first Senate-confirmed LGBTQ Cabinet secretary. Buttigieg’s confirmation elevates the former South Bend, Indiana, mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate to a top post in the federal government. The choice vaults a candidate President Joe Biden spoke glowingly of after the primary into a top job in his incoming administration and could earn Buttigieg what many Democrats believe is needed experience should he run for president again. The role of transportation secretary is expected to play a central role in Biden’s push for a bipartisan infrastructure package. The Senate is also set to vote later Tuesday to confirm Alejandro Mayorkas as Homeland Security secretary. Mayorkas was among Biden’s earliest announced nominees and would be the first Latino and immigrant to serve at the helm of the department. His confirmation will fill a critical role in the new administration...
    More On: department of homeland security Politically motivated extremists threaten months of violence, feds warn US to pause certain deportations for 100 days Capitol riot could stoke more violence in US, feds warn Chad Wolf tells staff he is stepping down as DHS boss WASHINGTON — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced he will vote against confirming Alejandro Mayorkas as President Biden’s Department of Homeland Security chief, calling him unfit for the role. In a Tuesday morning tweet, the Kentucky Republican noted that Mayorkas was found guilty of helping expedite visa requests for wealthy foreign investors when he was the department’s deputy chief, according to a 2015 investigation by the Office of Inspector General. “I’ve voted for several of President Biden’s mainstream cabinet nominees,” McConnell wrote. “But his choice to run Homeland Security was blasted by the Obama administration’s own Inspector General for running an immigration law...
    EXCLUSIVE: House Republicans on the Committee on Homeland Security on Tuesday urged the White House to provide "definitive clarity" on its strategy to counter the threat from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) -- as they warn of an aggressive attempt by China to erode American dominance."We remain extraordinarily concerned about the CCP’s blatant efforts to weaponize their private sector for intelligence and military purposes, exploit the data of American people and businesses, and manipulate the global markets for critical and emerging technologies, all while being less than forthcoming of the international stage," the letter to National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, obtained by Fox News, said. RUSSIA, CHINA BENEFITING FROM A BIDEN PRESIDENCY, NOT AMERICA: REP. MCCARTHY House GOP Letter to Jake Sullivan by Fox News on Scribd The letter, written by all Republicans on the House committee, acknowledges that some Biden nominees and appointees have addressed China, but the lawmakers "remain troubled that...
    By Clare Foran and Ted Barrett | CNN The Senate voted to confirm Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary on Tuesday, making him the first Senate-confirmed LGBTQ Cabinet secretary. Buttigieg’s confirmation elevates the former South Bend, Indiana, mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate to a top post in the federal government. The choice vaults a candidate President Joe Biden spoke glowingly of after the primary into a top job in his incoming administration and could earn Buttigieg what many Democrats believe is needed experience should he run for president again. The role of transportation secretary is expected to play a central role in Biden’s push for a bipartisan infrastructure package. The Senate is also set to vote later Tuesday to confirm Alejandro Mayorkas as Homeland Security secretary. Mayorkas was among Biden’s earliest announced nominees and would be the first Latino and immigrant to serve at the helm of the department. His...
    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he’ll vote against confirming President Biden’s nominee for secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Alejandro Mayorkas “does not deserve Senate confirmation to lead Homeland Security,” McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, said. “I’ll be voting against his confirmation and urge our colleagues to do the same.“ Republicans oppose Mayorkas based in part on a 2015 inspector general’s report that found Mayorkas had shown a preference for the politically connected seeking participation in the EB-5 visa program, which offers a fast-track path to obtaining a green card for wealthy people who start businesses in the United States. Mayorkas at the time was a deputy secretary of the Homeland Security Department. McConnell, in a floor speech on Tuesday, said Mayorkas “did his best to turn U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services into an unethical favor of factory for Democratic Party royalty,” including former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe...
    (CNN)The Senate is on track to confirm Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary and Alejandro Mayorkas as Homeland Security secretary on Tuesday.Mayorkas was among President Joe Biden's earliest announced nominees and would be the first Latino and immigrant to serve at the helm of the department.His confirmation will fill a critical role in the new administration and he'll be expected to swiftly begin rolling back Trump administration immigration policies while juggling the response to a global pandemic, national security threats, and restoring a department that's been rattled by leadership turnover and vacancies in recent years.Mayorkas is the first Biden nominee who has met a Republican filibuster, and his confirmation vote comes after the Senate voted Thursday to break a GOP filibuster and advance the nomination.Biden's nomination of Buttigieg to be his transportation secretary will elevate the former South Bend, Indiana, mayor and 2020 Democratic presidential candidate to a top post in...
    The Department of Homeland Security authorized the Transportation Security Administration to begin enforcement of President Biden's mask mandate for U.S. travelers on Sunday. Acting DHS Secretary David Pekoske directed the TSA to mandate face coverings at "screening checkpoints and throughout the commercial and public transportation system" following a decision to enact a national emergency declaration to combat the spread of the coronavirus. Biden's executive order, which requires masks in airports, bus stations, and train stations, will take effect on Tuesday. “TSA will fully comply with the President’s Executive Orders, CDC guidance and the DHS National Emergency determination to ensure healthy and secure travel across all transportation sectors. This will help prevent further spread of COVID-19 and encourage a unified government response,” Darby LaJoye, a senior official performing the duties of the TSA administrator, said. “As we continue to experience impacts from this pandemic, we are committed to this measure...
    Washington (CNN)The delay in confirming President Joe Biden's Homeland Security secretary has left the department without clear direction as it confronts a series of stark challenges, including domestic terror threats, a massive cyber breach, uncertainty at the border and helping coordinate the distribution of Covid vaccines. Alejandro Mayorkas, the nominee for DHS secretary, will have a final confirmation vote this week after a holdup in the Senate that angered Democrats and caused a flurry of effort to get the confirmation done quickly.The vote, originally scheduled for Monday, has been pushed to Tuesday due to the winter storm that hit the Washington, DC, metropolitan area, which is impacting flights of senators coming into town, according to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer's office."You can tell that we are in a semi-holding pattern at the very top until Mr. Mayorkas is confirmed as Secretary and starts giving more clear public direction and more...
    Washington (CNN)The Department of Homeland Security said Sunday that Transportation Security Administration workers now have the authority to enforce President Joe Biden's transportation mask mandate "at TSA screening checkpoints and throughout the commercial and public transportation system."Acting Secretary David Pekoske on Sunday signed a Determination of National Emergency, which said the TSA can "take actions consistent with the authorities" of its federal jurisdiction so it can enforce the mask mandate order laid out by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention late Friday. "This includes supporting the CDC in the enforcement of any orders or other requirements necessary to protect the transportation system, including passengers and employees, from Covid-19 and to mitigate the spread of Covid-19 through the transportation system, to the extent appropriate and consistent with applicable law," Pekoske wrote.The CDC order issued last week requires people to wear a mask while using any form of public transportation,...
    Senate Democrats drew the support of some Republicans Thursday in advancing the nomination of Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasFormer DHS heads blast Republicans for stalling Binden nominee Mayorkas Senate GOP slow walking Biden's pick to lead DHS DHS warns of heightened risk posed by domestic violent extremists MORE, President Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), after Sen. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyFormer DHS heads blast Republicans for stalling Binden nominee Mayorkas Senate GOP slow walking Biden's pick to lead DHS Conservatives lean into warnings on 'wave of censorship' MORE (R-Mo.) placed a hold on his nomination. The 55-42 vote ticks off the procedural hurdle before the Senate must vote to formally confirm him on Monday. The additional vote was required due to Hawley’s hold, after he argued Mayorkas alignment with Biden’s immigration plan and calls to stop the border wall deserve more scrutiny. But the delays have enraged...
    (CNN)The Senate is set to vote Thursday to break a GOP filibuster and advance the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas to be President Joe Biden's secretary of Homeland Security after Republicans objected to efforts to quickly install a critical leader of the country's national security apparatus.Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has pushed to have Mayorkas confirmed swiftly, but Republicans have argued that the nominee hasn't been properly vetted on immigration issues and have called for an additional hearing on his nomination. Mayorkas is the first Biden nominee who has met a Republican filibuster, which comes as the Department of Homeland Security grapples with the coronavirus pandemic, national security concerns and immigration. Homeland Security issues bulletin over heightened threat environment following inaugurationDHS on Wednesday issued a threat bulletin due to the ongoing potential for violence in the wake of the presidential inauguration, including concerns that domestic extremists may be emboldened by...
    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin Wednesday warning of the lingering potential for violence from people motivated by antigovernment sentiment after President Joe Biden’s election, suggesting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol may embolden extremists and set the stage for additional attacks. The department did not cite any specific plots, but pointed to “a heightened threat environment across the United States” that it believes “will persist” for weeks after Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration. It is not uncommon for the federal government to warn local law enforcement through bulletins about the prospect for violence tied to a particular event or date, such as July 4. But this particular bulletin, issued through the department’s National Terrorism Advisory System, is notable because it effectively places the Biden administration into the politically charged debate over how to describe or characterize acts motivated by political ideology, and...
    The Department of Homeland Security did not cite a specific threat. The Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin Wednesday warning of the potential for lingering violence from people motivated by anti-government sentiment after President Joe Biden's election, suggesting the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol may embolden extremists and set the stage for additional attacks. The department did not cite a specific threat, but pointed to "a heightened threat environment across the United States" that it believes "will persist" for weeks after Biden's Jan. 20 inauguration. It is not uncommon for the federal government to warn local law enforcement through bulletins about the prospect for violence tied to a particular date or event, such as July 4.
    LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) – Law enforcement agencies in the Southland and across the nation were told Wednesday of a “heightened threat environment” which federal officials are linking to the presidential transition that they say could lead to acts of domestic terrorism by extremists. The Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin Wednesday warning of the potential for lingering violence from people motivated by anti-government sentiment after President Joe Biden’s election. The department did not cite a specific threat, but pointed to “a heightened threat environment across the United States” that it believes “will persist” in the weeks since Biden took office. DHS said it consulted with law enforcement and intelligence agencies before issuing the alert about the potential for homegrown violent extremism. “Information suggests that some ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority and the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled...
    (CNN)Senate Republicans plan to object to any efforts to quickly confirm Alejandro Mayorkas as secretary of Homeland Security, further delaying his confirmation as the department grapples with the Covid-19 pandemic, national security concerns and President Joe Biden's ambitious immigration plans.In confirming the GOP's plans to filibuster, Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas told reporters Wednesday on Capitol Hill that "there's a number of problems" with Mayorkas' nomination.Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has pushed to have Mayorkas confirmed quickly, but Cornyn and other Senate Republicans argue that Mayorkas hasn't been properly vetted on immigration issues and are calling for an additional hearing into his nomination.Republicans' planned objections to Biden's nominee to lead the Homeland Security Department means Schumer would have to take procedural steps to overcome a filibuster on Mayorkas. The Senate Democratic leader would need 51 votes in the Senate to overcome the filibuster, a process sure to consume several...
    The Department of Homeland Security issued a domestic terrorism alert cautioning the public of potential attacks from "violent extremists." "The Acting Secretary of Homeland Security has issued a National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin due to a heightened threat environment across the United States, which DHS believes will persist in the weeks following the successful Presidential Inauguration," the Wednesday bulletin read. "Information suggests that some ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority and the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled by false narratives, could continue to mobilize to incite or commit violence." DHS added that some of the "extremists" were bred through "anger over COVID-19 restrictions, the 2020 election results, and police use of force." The agency also cited the potential for threats to arise from "racial and ethnic tension." The bulletin follows the Jan. 6 riot that saw thousands of...
    WASHINGTON -- The Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin Wednesday warning of the potential for lingering violence from people motivated by anti-government sentiment after President Joe Biden's election.The department did not cite a specific threat, but pointed to "a heightened threat environment across the United States" that it believes "will persist" in the weeks since Biden took office. DHS said it consulted with law enforcement and intelligence agencies before issuing the alert about the potential for homegrown violent extremism."Information suggests that some ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority and the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled by false narratives, could continue to mobilize to incite or commit violence,'' the bulletin said.With the warning, the Biden administration is effectively stepping into the politically charged debate over how to describe or characterize acts motivated by political ideology, suggesting that it sees...
    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin Wednesday warning of the potential for lingering violence from people motivated by anti-government sentiment after President Joe Biden’s election. The department did not cite a specific threat, but pointed to “a heightened threat environment across the United States” that it believes “will persist” in the weeks since Biden took office. DHS said it consulted with law enforcement and intelligence agencies before issuing the alert about the potential for homegrown violent extremism. “Information suggests that some ideologically-motivated violent extremists with objections to the exercise of governmental authority and the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled by false narratives, could continue to mobilize to incite or commit violence,” the bulletin said. With the warning, the Biden administration is effectively stepping into the politically charged debate over how to describe or characterize acts motivated by political...
    HOUSTON, Texas -- A federal judge on Tuesday barred the U.S. government from enforcing a 100-day deportation moratorium that is a key immigration priority of President Joe Biden.U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton issued a temporary restraining order sought by Texas, which sued on Friday against a Department of Homeland Security memo that instructed immigration agencies to pause most deportations. Tipton said the Biden administration had failed "to provide any concrete, reasonable justification for a 100-day pause on deportations."Tipton's order is an early blow to the Biden administration, which has proposed far-reaching changes sought by immigration advocates, including a plan to legalize an estimated 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. Biden promised during his campaign to pause most deportations for 100 days.The order represents a victory for Texas' Republican leaders, who often sued to stop programs enacted by Biden's Democratic predecessor, President Barack Obama. It also showed that just...
    Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee are refusing to hold hearings on Alejandro Mayorkas, President Joe Biden’s nominee to helm the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). On Tuesday, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and several top Republicans sent a letter to the committee’s incoming chairman, Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), arguing the panel should hold its own hearings on Mayorkas’s qualifications. The senators, in particular, wrote that while the Senate Homeland Security Committee had purview over the nomination, an independent hearing was needed given Mayorkas’s views on existing immigration law. The letter states.: The Committee on the Judiciary has jurisdiction over matters relating to immigration and nationality under [the current Senate rules]. For this reason, all members of the committee should have the opportunity … to publicly discuss with [Mayorkas] his plans with respect to [DHS’s] immigration components and functions. The Republicans signing the letter specifically outlined that they were not trying...
    President Joe Biden President Joe Biden has named Ashley Tabaddor, a vocal critic of the previous administration’s anti-immigrant and anti-asylum policies and the president of the national immigration judges union, as the top attorney at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency tasked with adjudicating immigration paperwork that has been decimated and politicized over the past four years. It’s another major sign that the new Biden administration is intent on fulfilling its pledge to retreat from many of the prior administration’s actions at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). In fact, CNN reports that “[o]ver recent days, the department has started to hire staff with extensive backgrounds in immigrant rights, immigration law and refugee resettlement.” CNN’s Priscilla Alvarez reports that new hires at DHS include David Shahoulian, the new assistant secretary for border security and immigration and the former chief counsel for the House Judiciary Committee, which carried out expansive investigations into the prior administration’s abuses against asylum-seekers...
    EXCLUSIVE: Former Obama and Bush-era homeland security secretaries on Tuesday urged the Senate to "swiftly" confirm Alejandro Mayorkas to lead DHS, saying "any further delays" will "hinder" the country’s ability to respond to national security risks.Former DHS secretaries for former President George W. Bush, Tom Ridge and Michael Chertoff, and former DHS secretaries for former President Barack Obama, Janet Napolitano and Jeh Johnson, penned a letter Tuesday to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., urging them to "promptly consider and confirm" Biden’s nominee. BIDEN'S DHS PICK MAYORKAS ADVANCES OUT OF COMMITTEE "In the wake of the January 6th domestic terror attack on the Capitol—the symbol of our nation’s democracy—it is more urgent than ever to have in place an experienced, capable and Senate-confirmed leader," they wrote. "That person is Mayorkas." The four former homeland security secretaries pointed out that in the past four years, DHS...
    By Nomaan Merchant | Associated Press HOUSTON — A federal judge on Tuesday barred the U.S. government from enforcing a 100-day deportation moratorium that is a key immigration priority of President Joe Biden. U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton issued a temporary restraining order sought by Texas, which sued on Friday against a Department of Homeland Security memo that instructed immigration agencies to pause most deportations. Tipton said the Biden administration had failed “to provide any concrete, reasonable justification for a 100-day pause on deportations.” Tipton’s order is an early blow to the Biden administration, which has proposed far-reaching changes sought by immigration advocates, including a plan to legalize an estimated 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. Biden promised during his campaign to pause most deportations for 100 days. The order represents a victory for Texas’ Republican leaders, who often sued to stop programs enacted by Biden’s Democratic predecessor,...
    HOUSTON (AP) — A federal judge on Tuesday barred the U.S. government from enforcing a 100-day deportation moratorium that is a key immigration priority of President Joe Biden. U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton issued a temporary restraining order sought by Texas, which sued on Friday against a Department of Homeland Security memo that instructed immigration agencies to pause most deportations. Tipton’s order is an early blow to the Biden administration, which has proposed far-reaching changes sought by immigration advocates, including a plan to legalize an estimated 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally. Biden promised during his campaign to pause most deportations for 100 days. The order represents a victory for Texas’ Republican leaders, who often sued to stop programs enacted by Biden’s Democratic predecessor, President Barack Obama. It also showed that just as Democratic-led states and immigration groups fought former President Donald Trump over...
    Alejandro Mayorkas, President Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), was one step closer to taking the position on Tuesday after the Senate Homeland Security Committee advanced his nomination. Mayorkas’ nomination was approved 7-4, with Democrats and GOP Sens. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, and Rob Portman, R-Ohio, voting to advance the nomination. It will now advance to the Senate floor, when he is likely to be confirmed. HAWLEY BLOCKS QUICK CONSIDERATION OF BIDEN DHS NOMINEE, CITING 'AMNESTY' PLAN Mayorkas, a former head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and deputy Homeland Security secretary, would be the first immigrant to run the department if confirmed.  He would enter into a department facing both the aftermath of the Jan. 6 riots in Washington D.C. as well as implementing a new wave of immigration policy measures from President Biden, who has promised to undo much of President Donald Trump’s legacy in...
    (CNN)The Department of Homeland Security, largely hollowed out over the last four years, is moving with urgency to staff agencies with people who had front row seats to the hardline immigration limits rolled out under former President Donald Trump, in order to rescind them. The department -- the third largest in the US government -- was closely tied to Trump's immigration actions and will continue to play a critical role in the coming months and years as those policies are reversed. Over recent days, the department has started to hire staff with extensive backgrounds in immigrant rights, immigration law and refugee resettlement. Judge asks Biden administration to clarify deportation pause order"It will have a substantial difference in the ability of the department to execute because people understand what's going on," said Peter Boogaard, communications director at FWD.us and a DHS official under President Barack Obama. "The Trump administration weaponized the...
    (CNN)A federal judge in Texas on Monday asked the Biden administration to clarify its 100-day pause on deportations as he considers a lawsuit to block the moratorium. Over the weekend, Texas, which is suing the Biden administration, submitted a Fox News report to the court that cited an internal email supposedly instructing Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials to "release them all, immediately." The Justice Department told the court Monday that some undocumented immigrants with removal orders had been released from custody, but as part of separate litigation relating to Covid-19. The Department of Homeland Security has discretion in who it releases, DOJ added. Biden starts fast on immigration by halting border wall and travel ban while embracing DACA "There are going to be times that the Department of Homeland Security uses its discretion in manners that Texas disagrees... Texas has different views about immigration policy than the current administration,"...
    President Biden has nominated Alejandro Mayorkas to be the next secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), who will take a key role in the closely watched area of immigration policy. Here is what to know about Mayorkas: BIDEN DHS NOMINEE MAYORKAS SAYS ICE SHOULD NOT BE DEFUNDED, DESPITE ICE CALLS Born in Cuba Mayorkas was born in Havana, Cuba, and came to California as a child. If confirmed, he would be the first immigrant to serve as head of the Department of Homeland Security. "My father and mother brought me to this country to escape communism and to provide me with the security, opportunity, and pride that American citizenship brings to each of us," he said in his opening statement at his confirmation hearing. Former federal prosecutor  Mayorkas trained as a lawyer before eventually working as assistant U.S. Attorney in the Central District of California. He was later nominated by...
    President Joe Biden took office Wednesday, but ethics concerns still trail some of his Cabinet picks. Biden's Commerce Secretary pick, Gina Raimondo, Homeland Security pick Alejandro Mayorkas and Labor Secretary pick Marty Walsh have all faced questions about favoritism or conflicts of interest in the last decade. BIDEN LABOR SECRETARY NOMINEE MARTY WALSH'S CAMPAIGN PAID HIS GIRLFRIEND'S EMPLOYER NEARLY $1 MILLION "It's extraordinary how many of these top Biden nominees are already under an ethics cloud. We're going back to the future, as many of these former Obama officials are bringing their baggage back with them," Adam Laxalt, outside counsel to Americans for Public Trust and the former Nevada attorney general, told Fox News in a statement. Rhode Island Gov. Raimondo faced an ethics complaint from an adversarial state GOP that took issue with a $1 billion contract extension with gaming company IGT without a competitive bidding process, WPRI reported in 2019. In 2020, the state's ethics commission dismissed...
    The head of the Transportation Security Administration agency will take over the Department of Homeland Security on a temporary basis until President Biden's nominee can be confirmed by the Senate. TSA Administrator David Pekoske announced Wednesday that he moved over to DHS headquarters in Washington, D.C., until Alejandro Mayorkas is confirmed as secretary. Pekoske previously worked as deputy secretary at DHS in 2019 after Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen resigned and Kevin McAleenan was made acting secretary. "Welcomed today at @DHSHQ HQ as Acting Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security until Mr. Mayorkas is confirmed. Thank you to the men and women across the Department for your commitment to the DHS mission!" Pekoske wrote in a post to Twitter Wednesday afternoon. Welcomed today at @DHSgov HQ as Acting Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security until Mr. Mayorkas is confirmed. Thank you to the men and women across the Department for...
    Neither Homeland Security nor the FBI, both agencies in charge of spearheading the special security event in Washington, D.C., on Inauguration Day, immediately made announcements Wednesday after Biden was sworn in outside the U.S. Capitol regarding how long a heightened militarized presence would remain in the downtown area now that the ceremony has ended. An official with the Department of Defense declined to comment on the matter, referring Fox News to Homeland Security or the FBI to disclose information about lowering the security presence.   DC INAUGURATION SECURITY AT CAPITOL INCLUDES NATIONAL GUARD MEDICS TRAINED IN 'BATTLEFIELD TRAUMA,' EXPLOSIVES  More than 25,000 National Guard members from all 50 states, three territories, and Washington, D.C., were supporting federal and district authorities at the 59th presidential inauguration Wednesday, according to the latest figures released by the National Guard Bureau.  Homeland Security was working with all of its 200 partners, including National Guard...
    Missouri Republican Sen. Josh Hawley is blocking a move that would have provided speedy confirmation of Joe Biden's nominee to run the Homeland Security Department – after objecting to counting millions of votes that went to Biden. Hawley said Tuesday he would object to a move that would let the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas go straight to the floor, allowing Biden to have a Homeland chief in place as soon as he takes office.  Hawley continues to face political blowback for his decision to join House Republicans in objecting to counting votes from Pennsylvania and Arizona that went to Biden. He voted not to accept them, a move that would have overturned the election results, even after a MAGA mob ransacked the Capitol on January 6 – infuriating Democrats and many Republicans. Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday that Trump 'provoked' the mob with his remarks to supporters near...
    The incoming Biden administration will work “to cease funding for further construction” of the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, according to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) secretary nominee Alejandro Mayorkas, who told senators Tuesday that U.S. law will dictate whether individuals in migrant caravans are allowed to remain in the United States.    Mayorkas appeared for his Senate confirmation hearing one day after reports surfaced that Biden intends to propose an eight-year path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants shortly after taking office Wednesday, signaling an immediate focus on a topic that has both consumed and paralyzed Congress for decades.  Biden to Propose 8-year Path to Citizenship for Immigrants It would provide an eight-year path to citizenship for an estimated 11 million people living in the US without legal status Republican lawmakers pressed Mayorkas on whether the Biden administration would spend $1.4 billion that Congress appropriated late last year to...
    Sen. Josh Hawley, criticized for his role in the Capitol riot, is holding up the confirmation of Biden's homeland security chief. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) pledged Tuesday to obstruct the confirmation of President-elect Joe Biden's pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security. His stated reason: Alejandro Mayorkas plans to implement Biden's immigration reform agenda. Hawley, who has come under fire for helping to fuel the deadly insurrection by supporters of Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol on Jan 6, made the announcement in a statement released not long after Mayorkas appeared before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. In his confirmation hearing before the committee, Mayorkas noted the recent attempted coup in the capital and pledged to do everything possible to prevent future attacks: "The terror that you felt — your colleagues, staff, and everyone present —...
    (CNN)Sen. Josh Hawley blocked quick consideration of President-elect Joe Biden's Homeland Security nominee, Alejandro Mayorkas, on Tuesday, leaving the third-largest federal department without confirmed leadership as it faces national security concerns, a pandemic and an incoming president prepared to roll out ambitious immigration plans.The Missouri Republican's decision stemmed from an exchange with Mayorkas hours earlier during the nominee's confirmation hearing before the Senate Homeland Security Committee. "Mr. Mayorkas has not adequately explained how he will enforce federal law and secure the southern border given President-elect Biden's promise to roll back major enforcement and security measures," Hawley said in a statement. Read: Excerpts from Bidens DHS pick Alejandro Mayorkas opening statement "Just today, he declined to say he would enforce the laws Congress has already passed to secure the border wall system. Given this, I cannot consent to skip the standard vetting process and fast-track this nomination when so many questions...
    Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley said that he would object to the expedited consideration of Alejandro Mayorkas, President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Department of Homeland Security. Hawley’s announcement came hours after Mayorkas’s confirmation hearing Tuesday morning, and will delay the confirmation of a post that Democrats have argued is absolutely imperative to fill as soon as possible given the heightened risks to national security. “Mr. Mayorkas has not adequately explained how he will enforce federal law and secure the southern border given President-elect Biden’s promise to roll back major enforcement and security measures,” Hawley said in a statement. “Just today, he declined to say he would enforce the laws Congress has already passed to secure the border wall system. Given this, I cannot consent to skip the standard vetting process and fast-track this nomination when so many questions remain unanswered,” Hawley said. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) signs on to...
    Incoming Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas wouldn't say if he had plans to tear down portions of President Donald Trump's border wall.  'I haven't looked at that specific question,' Mayorkas told members of the Senate Homeland Security Committee during his Tuesday confirmation hearing.    Mayorkas was asked by Nebraska Republican Sen. James Lankford if he recommended 'any of the physical barriers along our southern border be dismantled or removed.'  President-elect Joe Biden's pick for Homeland Security Secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas, told members of the Senate Homeland Security Committee Tuesday that he hadn't 'looked into the specific question' of tearing down portions of President Donald Trump's border wall  DHS Secretary nominee Alejandro Mayorkas said he prescribed to the same thinking on the border as the late Sen. John McCain, explaining that he believed it was a 'varied and diverse challenge' and didn't need a 'monolithic answer' such as a wall...
    More On: border wall Trump to travel to the border in Texas on Tuesday Steve Bannon’s co-defendant in fraud case can’t move trial: judge ‘Cheese wall’ art installation at US-Mexico border ruined by contractors: suit Indicted ‘We Build The Wall’ founder raising money again — for legal fees President-elect Joe Biden’s nominee to be Homeland Security secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas, said Tuesday he will end construction of the Mexico border wall if he’s confirmed by the Senate. “President-elect Biden has committed to stop construction of the border wall. It would be my responsibility to execute on that commitment, and I have not looked at the question of what we do with respect to the wall that already has been built,” Mayorkas said. President Trump, who leaves office Wednesday, oversaw construction of 452 miles of border wall, according to US Customs and Border Protection. Significant stretches of border remain unwalled, particularly...
    (CNN)Alejandro Mayorkas will appear before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Tuesday to be considered for secretary of Homeland Security. Read excerpts from his opening statement as prepared: "I am honored to appear before you as the Nominee to be the next Secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security. It would be the greatest privilege of my life to return to the Department and lead the nearly 240,000 men and women who dedicate their talent and energy to the safety and security of our Nation. ...The principles of homeland and security have been tremendously important in shaping my life. My father and mother brought me to this country to escape communism and to provide me with the security, opportunity, and pride that American citizenship brings to each of us. I was raised to appreciate each day what this country has meant for our family, and the...
    The Senate faces intense pressure to approve President-elect Joe Biden's pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Alejandro Mayorkas, two weeks after the deadly assault on the U.S. Capitol. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is slated to holding a hearing on Mayorkas' nomination Tuesday morning. It is one of five confirmation hearings senators have scheduled on the day before Mr. Biden is inaugurated. The government's third largest department, created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, handles issues ranging from counter-terrorism and border security to immigration policy and disaster management. If confirmed, Mayorkas, the son of Cuban immigrants, would take the helm of a highly politicized 240,000-person agency that has seen a succession of temporary leaders during the Trump administration — six in four years – two Senate-confirmed, four acting. Gil Kerlikowske, a former head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) who worked with Mayorkas...
    The first hearings for President-elect Joe Biden's Cabinet nominations are set to begin on Tuesday, just one day before his inauguration on Jan. 20. The action kicks off in the morning, with the Senate Finance Committee hosting Treasury secretary nominee Janet Yellen, the Senate Intelligence Committee holding a hearing for Director of National Intelligence pick Avril Haines, and Homeland Security secretary nominee Alejandro Mayorkas appearing before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.FAST FACTS Confirmation hearings are often marked by partisan differences, and this week is likely to be no different Time will tell whether opposition to any of the picks will be enough to sink their nominations That afternoon, Biden's pick for secretary of State, Antony Blinken, will have a hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and the Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a hearing for Defense secretary nominee Lloyd J. Austin III. Thursday will...
    (CNN)In nearly 28 years in Congress -- including six spent as chair of the US House Committee on Homeland Security -- I have never experienced a day quite like that which my colleagues and I endured last Wednesday. Having lived through 9/11 and other attacks, most Americans have little difficulty appreciating the threat of foreign terrorism and the need to vigilantly guard against it. But never in our lifetimes has the threat of domestic terrorism struck so close to the bedrock of our nation. Bennie G. ThompsonGiven this unprecedented domestic assault, the lingering atmosphere of lawlessness and intimidation in our capital and the credible threat of additional violence directed at our national government and statehouses across the country in the days ahead, it would be an abdication of our most vital responsibility to the American people to further compromise their security and that of our republic in this moment. To...
    (CNN)President-elect Joe Biden has asked Lisa Monaco, his deputy attorney general nominee, to temporarily step away from those duties and serve as a homeland security adviser to his inauguration team, a Biden transition official said, a sign that the rising security concerns demand high-level coordination.This is a temporary position, which will continue only until Inauguration Day, when Monaco will go back to preparing for confirmation hearings as the No. 2 official at the Department of Justice.This is a breaking story and will be updated.
    The Senate will hold a confirmation hearing for President-elect Joe Biden's intended nominee to head the Department of Homeland Security a day before the inauguration. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee leaders announced late Tuesday afternoon that it will hold a committee meeting Tuesday, Jan. 19, to consider the nomination of Alejandro Mayorkas. The hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m., according to committee leaders Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican, and Gary Peters, a Michigan Democrat. The sudden push to advance Mayorkas comes a day after acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf said he was resigning, effective Monday night. Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Pete Gaynor took over in Wolf's place and is the sixth person to head the department under the Trump administration. Biden's transition team said in November that it would nominate Mayorkas, an Obama-era DHS official, to lead the 250,000-person department. The 61-year-old was born in...
    (CNN)President-elect Joe Biden is on course to lag behind his recent predecessors who had Cabinet nominees confirmed on the day of inauguration, causing concern that Biden's administration could be hampered in its early efforts to face immediate security, health and economic challenges. Biden's transition team is beginning a new messaging push to urge Republican senators to swiftly confirm national security nominees -- positions helming the Pentagon and the State, Homeland Security and other key departments -- with Biden set to take office in eight days, a source familiar with the plans told CNN. Politico was the first to report Biden team's effort.Alejandro Mayorkas, Biden's pick for homeland security secretary who has yet to have a confirmation hearing scheduled, is a top priority in their push, the source said.That push is getting a boost from Senate Democrats, including top Democrat Chuck Schumer, who told colleagues in a letter Tuesday that the...
    In a letter to his employees Monday afternoon, he mentions “recent events” as the reason for his withdrawal, Australian media still report. The resignation comes just a week before the start of Democratic President-elect Joe Biden’s tenure, and days after pro-Trump activists insurgency on Capitol Hill in Washington. Mr. Chad, who had held this post since November 2019, criticized this “tragic” invasion last week. He leaves as new threats hang over President-elect Joe Biden’s swearing-in, due in Washington on January 20. Since the scenes of violence in Congress last week, others close to the outgoing president have defected, the first being Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.
    The president of United States, Donald trump, has decreed a state of emergency in the District of Columbia, in whose capital, Washington DC, the inauguration of the president-elect will be held in a few days, Joe biden, and where less than a week ago a mob of his sympathizers attacked the emblematic building of the Capitol, seat of the Legislative Power of the country. Trump has alluded to “emergency conditions” before the presidential inauguration to make this decision, which allows the Department of Homeland Security and the National Emergency Management Agency to intervene and assist the city’s security forces if necessary. The validity of this decision is until January 24. In this sense, the mayor of Washington, Muriel Bowser, had asked the Department of Homeland Security hours before tighten security around the Capitol ahead of the expected event that will inaugurate a new legislature in the United...
    (CNN)President Donald Trump will bookend his administration's focus on immigration with a trip to his signature border wall on the US-Mexico border, a visit on the heels of a deadly riot on Capitol Hill incited by the President as House Democrats prepare a second impeachment vote.On Tuesday, Trump is expected to travel to Alamo, Texas, near the border, to mark the completion of more than 450 miles of wall -- a trip that caters to the supporters who put him in office in 2016 despite heightening tensions nationwide and a raging pandemic.Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf resigns; FEMA Administrator Pete Gaynor to take overThe border wall, which Trump repeatedly cited over the last four years as an accomplishment, cost US taxpayers -- not Mexico -- billions and became emblematic of the President's restrictionist immigration policies, which largely sealed the US off from immigrants and refugees. On the eve...
    WASHINGTON -- President Donald Trump's acting head of the Department of Homeland Security resigned Monday, leaving the post earlier than planned and as the nation faces a heightened threat from domestic terrorism from extremists seeking to reverse the November election.Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf said he had intended to stay in the post until the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.But Wolf, who had been serving in an acting capacity since November 2019 and was never confirmed by the Senate, said he was compelled to leave by "recent events," including court rulings that found he could not legally hold the position. He did not specify the other events or cite other factors."These events and concerns increasingly serve to divert attention and resources away from the important work of the Department in this critical time of a transition of power," he said in a written message to DHS employees.His departure follows the...
    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s acting head of the Department of Homeland Security resigned Monday, leaving the post earlier than planned and as the nation faces a heightened threat from domestic terrorism from extremists seeking to reverse the November election. Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf said he had intended to stay in the post until the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden. But Wolf, who had been serving in an acting capacity since November 2019 and was never confirmed by the Senate, said he was compelled to leave by “recent events,” including court rulings that found he could not legally hold the position. He did not specify the other events or cite other factors. “These events and concerns increasingly serve to divert attention and resources away from the important work of the Department in this critical time of a transition of power,” he said in a written message...
    The Department of Homeland Security is setting increased inauguration security measures in motion earlier than scheduled, citing an “evolving security landscape” leading up to the event. Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said Monday that he’s moved up the timing of the national special security event for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration to Wednesday, instead of Jan. 19. He cited the “events of the past week,” along with an evolving security landscape. It comes days after thousands of supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol to try to stop the congressional certification of Bidens victory. Five people died. The FBI has also issued a bulletin warning of plans for armed protests at all 50 state capitals and in Washington, D.C., in the days leading up to Biden’s inauguration. © Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. ...
    Muriel Bowser, the Democrat mayor of Washington, DC, wants increased security to lock down the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joe Biden. Describing last week’s violent assault on the Capitol as an “unprecedented terrorist attack”, Bowser predicted Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20 will require a “different approach” compared to past endeavours. “While I will be reaching out to a broad range of local, regional and federal partners to enhance cooperation among our bodies, I strongly urge the United States Department of Homeland Security to adjust its approach to the Inauguration in several specific ways”, Bowser wrote in a letter to acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf. The missive was dated Saturday and made available on Sunday, confirming the District of Columbia was submitting a request for a “pre-disaster declaration” to allow for federal assistance. I strongly urge the United States Department of Homeland Security to adjust its approach to the Inauguration in several specific...
    Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser has outlined a list of proposed recommendations aimed at securing the nation's capital in the wake of Wednesday's Capitol Hill siege for when President-elect Joe Biden takes the oath of office on Jan. 20. "I strongly urge the United States Department of Homeland Security to adjust its approach to the Inauguration," she wrote in a letter addressed to acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf. "The requests outlined here — if issued swiftly and communicated broadly — are essential to demonstrating our collective resolve in ensuring the Constitutional transition of power." I strongly urge the United States Department of Homeland Security to adjust its approach to the Inauguration in several specific ways, and have outlined them in the following letter to Acting Secretary Wolf. pic.twitter.com/GaxUWfFbxk— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) January 10, 2021 Bowser explained her decision as a preemptive tactic aimed at counteracting discord similar to...
            by Jake Dima  Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security Rep. Bennie Thompson, a Mississippi Democrat, on Thursday urged the TSA and the FBI to place certain members of the Capitol mob on the “No-Fly List.” “Given the heinous domestic terrorist attack on the U.S. Capitol yesterday, I am urging the Transportation Security Administration [TSA] and the Federal Bureau of Investigation [FBI] to use their authorities to add the names of all identified individuals involved in the attack to the federal No-Fly List and keep them off planes,” Thompson said in a press release. “This should include all individuals identified as having entered the Capitol building—an intrusion which threatened the safety of Members of Congress and staff and served as an attack on our Nation.” Thousands of President Donald Trump supporters on Wednesday swarmed law enforcement, broke down barricades and eventually gained entry into the Capitol, ransacking the...
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