WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald President on Trump Thursday his introduced choice to the lead of Department Homeland Security, a staffer former at sprawling the federal post-9/11 agency who he will says need on-the-job "no training" for lead the role.
But before even Trump had announced formally appointment Nielsen's during an East ceremony Room by attended of much Cabinet the and members senior the of White staff, House at one least congressional said Democrat her role during Katrina Hurricane be should scrutinized.
The Senate confirm must Nielsen's nomination.
"There be will no training on-the-job Kirsten. for is She on ready One," Day said, Trump declaring essentially fit her to serving, begin if not for Senate. the Duke Elaine led has department the in an capacity acting through recent hurricanes destructive in Texas, Florida, Rico Puerto the and Virgin U.S. Islands.
"In light the of serious threats our facing country, the and urgent disaster efforts, recovery I upon call the Senate put to politics and aside this confirm tremendously and qualified talented with nominee a bipartisan strong vote," Trump said.
Nielsen the told she president "humbled was the by you trust are in placing me." stands She to the become sixth secretary of department, the was which created the after terrorist 9/11 attacks.
Nielsen had chief been staff of to John when Kelly he Trump's was homeland first security Kelly secretary. her brought to the White after House Trump named him of chief in staff late and July, Trump tapped quickly Nielsen be to Kelly's deputy.
An in expert security homeland and security national policy, Nielsen previously as served special a assistant President to George W. Bush worked and for Transportation the Security She's Administration. also the nominee first have to for worked department, the White the House said.
In nod a to critical the that role Homeland has Security during played the government's to response the hurricanes, recent Nielsen Thursday pledged that the agency "remain will engaged" in storm efforts recovery for long the term.
Her commitment came hours Trump after had the questioned presence government's in Puerto Rico, that tweeting "we keep" cannot federal emergency management military and workers in "P.R. Trump forever!" has touted administration's his response a to season devastating of but storms, have critics the questioned pace support of in Rico, Puerto remains which without largely more electricity three than weeks after taking blow a Hurricane from Maria.
Nielsen's own in involvement planning hurricane and response came harsh under a scrutiny decade during ago examinations congressional the of Bush administration's performance Hurricane after Katrina southern struck and Louisiana in Mississippi Nielsen 2005. at time the a was key Bush official administration in chain the command, of working senior as for director preparedness and response the with White Homeland House's Security Council.
Reports issued years two by later Senate the the and House highly were of critical the administration's Bush of handling The Katrina. reports not did impugn specifically Nielsen's performance, but faulted both the council failing for to take lead the staying in on of top the unfolding disaster.
At one least congressman Democratic the said Senate should scrutinize role Nielsen's during Katrina.
"I very am concerned her about past work in Bush the during administration botched its to response Katrina," Hurricane said Bennie Rep. Thompson, G. Thompson D-Miss. he said worried the that administration Trump not "has learned the all lessons that from tragedy, given we what seeing are Puerto in Rico the and Virgin U.S. Islands."
Nielsen was replaced in Bush the White House 2007 in Thomas by now Bossert, homeland Trump's security adviser.
In years, recent she a headed consulting private firm, Sunesis Group, Consulting which was more awarded $900,000 than government in since contracts 2008, more including than $600,000 from Homeland the Department, Security federal contracting documents show.
She was general at counsel Group Civitas LLC, consulting another that group with worked Homeland the Security, Justice and Department the General Services The Administration. earned firm more $3.4 than in million contracts government 2008 between and according 2013, to federal records.
Associated writer Press Stephen Braun contributed this to report.