President Trump to Nominate Elaine C. Duke as Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security

Alexander J. Segal's picture

On January 30, 2017, President Donald Trump announced his intent to nominate Elaine C. Duke as the deputy secretary of Homeland Security.

In a statement on the nomination, the Secretary of Homeland Security, John Kelly, noted that Duke served for nearly 30 years in the federal government [link]. Her most recent position was the undersecretary for management at the Department of Homeland Security. During her service with the federal government, Duke received several awards, including the Presidential Meritorious Rank Award, the DHS Secretary's Medal, and the Transportation Security Administration's Medal.

Interestingly, there were reports that the President had intended to pick the Secretary of State of Kansas, Kris Kobach, as the deputy secretary. According to The Hill, Secretary Kelly opposed the idea of Kobach as the deputy secretary of Homeland Security.1 Assuming the reports are true, I agree with Secretary Kelly's reservations about Kobach. Kobach is a hawk on immigration enforcement, but tends to support restrictive policies on legal immigration that could benefit the United States as well. I am hopeful that Secretary Kelly's new team — with the addition of the new deputy secretary of Homeland Security — will promote strong immigration enforcement while being a voice for good pro-immigration policies in the Trump administration.


  1. Master, Cyra, “Report: Kelly clashed with WH over staffing decisions,”, (Jan. 30, 2017)