Nielsen vows 'smooth' transition in first comments since resignation

Departing Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenLeft-leaning group to track which companies hire former top Trump aides Rosenstein: Zero tolerance immigration policy 'never should have been proposed or implemented' House Republican condemns anti-Trump celebrities during impeachment hearing MORE on Monday said she will work to ensure a "smooth" transition, with Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Kevin McAleenan set to take over as acting chief of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). 

President TrumpDonald TrumpWhat blue wave? A close look at Texas today tells of a different story Democrats go down to the wire with Manchin Trump's former bodyguard investigated in NY prosectors' probe: report MORE announced Sunday that Nielsen will leave her post. Wednesday will be her last day at the agency she led for 16 months. 


"I share the president’s goal of securing the border. I will continue to support all efforts to address the humanitarian and security crisis on the border, and other than that I’m on my way to keep doing what I can for the next few days," Nielsen told reporters outside her home on Monday.

She added that she had spent the past 24 hours "talking with government officials, administration officials, members of Congress to ensure a smooth transition."

"I don’t have any new announcements. I just want to thank the president again for the tremendous opportunity to serve this country. I’m forever grateful and proud of the men and women of DHS who work so hard every day to execute their missions and to protect the homeland," said Nielsen, who took over the DHS post after a brief stint in the White House as deputy chief of staff.

Her resignation was reportedly brought on by differences with Trump over DHS authorities when it came to asylum-seekers.

Trump had asked Nielsen and the Border Patrol to stop asylum seekers from entering the country, regardless of their legal rights, according to CNN and The New York Times.

Her departure was also spurred by Trump's renewed push to resume a policy that resulted in the separation of migrant children from their families at the U.S. border with Mexico, according to a report from NBC News.