John Kelly Becomes WH Chief of Staff, Elaine C. Duke Becomes Acting Secretary of Homeland Security

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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On July 28, 2017, President Donald Trump announced via Twitter that the former Secretary of Homeland Security, John F. Kelly, will succeed Reince Preibus as the 25th White House Chief of Staff.

Secretary of Homeland Security

John Kelly was sworn in as Secretary of Homeland Security on January 20, 2017 [see blog]. Although his tenure at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was brief, Secretary Kelly implemented many important polices on border security and interior enforcement [see article]. Kelly's tenure also saw record reductions in illegal crossings of the Southwest Border [see blog].

Effective July 31, 2017, the Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security, Elaine C. Duke, will assume leadership of the Department in an Acting capacity [link]. Acting Secretary Duke is a career government official with extensive experience at the Department of Homeland Security [see blog]. It remains to be seen whether President Trump will choose a new nominee for Secretary of Homeland Security from outside the DHS or whether he will elevate Secretary Duke or another official who is already in the DHS.

The Secretary of Homeland Security oversees the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Accordingly, the Secretary has significant responsibility for setting immigration policy and immigration enforcement. We will update the site with information regarding the leadership situation at DHS as it becomes available.