House chairman says Nielsen hasn't met the standards of a 'working relationship'

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) slammed Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenTrump puts Kushner in charge of overseeing border wall construction: report Hillicon Valley: Google to limit political ad targeting | Senators scrutinize self-driving car safety | Trump to 'look at' Apple tariff exemption | Progressive lawmakers call for surveillance reforms | House panel advances telecom bills Minority lawmakers call out Google for hiring former Trump DHS official MORE in an interview that aired Wednesday on Hill.TV, saying that she has not set "the kind of standard and working relationship" that he is looking for from an administration official.

"That doesn't set the kind of standard and working relationship that I'm looking for," Thompson told Hill.TV's Jamal Simmons on Tuesday, referring to Nielsen's move to decline an invitation to testify before the committee, as well as her canceling a meeting with him on Tuesday.

"We have to get on the same page. I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt that conflicts occurred," he continued. "But an election occurred in November of last year, and here we are almost to February, and not even one comment from the secretary."

"So I'll continue to reach out, and hopefully she will accept an invitation to come," he added. 

Hill.TV has reached out to the Department of Homeland Security for comment.

Thompson on Wednesday slammed Nielsen's move to not testify on border security before the House panel, saying to Nielsen in a letter that her decision was "unreasonable and unacceptable." 

Nielsen has echoed President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrats ask if they have reason to worry about UK result Trump scramble to rack up accomplishments gives conservatives heartburn Seven years after Sandy Hook, the politics of guns has changed MORE's call for a wall along the U.S. southern border, which played a role in the recent 35-day government shutdown. The president demanded $5 billion in funding for the wall and Democrats have offered $1.3 billion in border security measures. 

"In your public comments on border security, you maintained that Congress should 'get [its] job done,' " Thompson wrote. "Please know that as Chairman, I intend to ensure the Committee fulfills its oversight responsibilities on this important matter."

— Julia Manchester