Trump to oust Nielsen as early as this week: report

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden, Sanders lead field in Iowa poll The Memo: Cohen fans flames around Trump Memo Comey used to brief Trump on dossier released: report MORE is planning to oust Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenFormer GOP lawmaker on death of 7-year-old migrant girl: Message should be ‘don't make this journey, it will kill you' Young girl's death draws new scrutiny over US treatment of migrants No reason to assume American relations with Mexico are rocky MORE as early as this week, The Washington Post reported on Monday.

Five current and former White House officials told the Post that Trump is planning to remove Nielsen as soon as possible.

White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE is reportedly fighting the president on the matter, hoping to keep Nielsen in place. Kelly hired Nielsen as his chief of staff while he was Homeland Security secretary and has reportedly defended her for months.

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Trump has berated Nielsen in public and in private since she was hired, aggressively going after her during Cabinet meetings and mocking her in conversations with other White House officials, the Post reported.

Nielsen has reportedly told confidants that she is unhappy in the position. Aides told the Post that Trump does not seem to understand the nuances of immigration policy, creating a rift between himself and his Homeland Security secretary when Nielsen tries to explain the challenges posed by some of his proposals.

Trump has grown frustrated with Nielsen when she reportedly tells him that some of his hard-line proposals, including completely shutting down the border with Mexico, would not be feasible.

Nielsen's departure would be the latest in a string of high-profile Trump administration exits, including Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsInterior chief Zinke to leave administration Trump, Christie met to discuss chief of staff job: report Chief justice of California Supreme Court leaves GOP over Kavanaugh confirmation MORE. Sessions resigned last week at Trump's request.

Nielsen came under widespread scrutiny over the summer when reports emerged that the administration's so-called zero tolerance policy had resulted in the separation of thousands of migrant children from their parents at the southern border. Nielsen vigorously defended the policy in public, drawing the targeted ire of immigration activists and top Democratic lawmakers. Some critics called for her immediate resignation.

Trump later signed an executive order ending the practice amid heavy bipartisan pressure.

The Democratic Socialists of America’s Washington, D.C., chapter confronted Nielsen while she dined at a Mexican restaurant over the summer, chanting the words "shame" and “end Texas concentration camps."

The Department of Homeland Security in response said Nielsen shared "concern" over border immigration laws with the demonstrators.

Updated at 11:07 p.m.