On Sunday, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) head Kirstjen Nielsen became the 12th cabinet member to resign from the Trump administration. President Donald Trump has been increasingly vocal over his displeasure with Nielsen and her handling of border security.
Rather than a feather in his cap, the border remains a black spot on his administration’s record.
After a disastrous series of appearances before Congress where Nielsen’s competency was questioned, the Trump appointee abruptly resigned Sunday.
This afternoon I submitted my resignation to @POTUS and thanked him for the opportunity to serve in his administration.
— Sec. Kirstjen Nielsen (@SecNielsen) April 7, 2019
Its been an honor of a lifetime to serve with the brave men and women of @DHSgov. I could not be prouder of and more humbled by their service, dedication, and commitment to keep our country safe from all threats and hazards. pic.twitter.com/lIQ5iqGDmF
— Sec. Kirstjen Nielsen (@SecNielsen) April 7, 2019
But people are sending her less than fond farewells online.
Comedian Chelsea Handler took to Twitter with her message. She posted:
“Best of luck to Kirstjen Nielsen. I’m not sure where you’ll get hired with a resume that includes ‘locking kids in cages.’ I’m kidding, good luck at Fox News.”
Best of luck to Kirstjen Nielsen. I’m not sure where you’ll get hired with a resume that includes “locking kids in cages.” I’m kidding, good luck at Fox News.
— Chelsea Handler (@chelseahandler) April 8, 2019
Nielsen will forever be linked with the Stephen Miller created and former Attorney General Jeff Sessions implemented family separation policy. After reports of abuse and neglect of migrant children as well as more than one death under Nielsen’s watch, she was called to testify before Congress.
Kirstjen Nielsen—who separated thousands of refugee children from their families—and made no plan to ever reunite them—or even keep track of who the children were—and left such a mess that it will take over two years to get the families reunited again—is resigning. Good riddance.
— Scott Dworkin (@funder) April 7, 2019
But Nielsen seemed ill prepared, with few answers or knowledge to share in response to congressional inquiries. This lack of accountability for the deaths of children as well as the images of children in cages reflected poorly on Nielsen and her boss, President Trump.
Nielsen is a less than popular figure for both liberals and conservatives. One side saw her as heartless, the other not tough enough.
.@SecNielsen separated mamas from their babies and locked little children in cages.
I’m not sorry to see her go. I only wish she’d been fired long ago, before she ever had a chance to resign.
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) April 8, 2019
Last year, I was the first U.S. Senator to call for Secretary Nielsen’s resignation over this Administration’s cruel and inhumane family separation policy. The next DHS Secretary must unequivocally denounce this abusive policy. We deserve better. pic.twitter.com/4ZGqUobjUQ
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) April 8, 2019
Secretary Nielsen took babies out of the hands of their mothers and put them into cages. Good riddance.
But make no mistake, her policies were dictated by President Trump and his anti-immigrant agenda that we must continue to fight against. https://t.co/PHv1y1ftsv
— Ben Ray Luján (@repbenraylujan) April 7, 2019
“Here’s this woman who was a reasonably admired bureaucrat, and for the rest of her life, people will look at her and think, ‘Oh, that’s the woman who put children in cages… who broke up families across the border.’ She’s going to get what she deserves.” https://t.co/qRIpRhcqTf
— Jon Cooper (@joncoopertweets) April 8, 2019
Very few people had anything kind to say about Nielsen in the wake of her resignation.
Many replied directly to Nielsen’s announcement on Twitter.
— Dustin LaPres (@DstnLap) April 8, 2019
Proud? Children DIED on your watch. Some will never see their parents again. Others remain separated and locked away as part of the cruelest, most heartless immigration policy in US history. You should be ashamed of yourself, not proud… #KirstjenNielsen
— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) April 8, 2019
You tore children from their parents and then lost them in the foster care system.
You broke the law. You ordered your agents to break the law.
You lied to the American people and to Congress.
You served dishonorably. My history judge you accordingly.
— Pé Resists (@4everNeverTrump) April 8, 2019
Service to country when selling your soul doesn’t count !#ChildrenInCages is your legacy
— Sanja Sinobad (@SanjaSinobad) April 8, 2019
Proud to separate children from their parents? Bunch of sociopaths.
— Vote Dem for the Planet (@Brasilmagic) April 7, 2019
I hear The Hague is beautiful this time of year. You should visit…
— Inept Sloganeer (@EliotGreenspan) April 7, 2019
Because of you and your actions, there are dead, abused, kidnapped, and abandoned children and that will never be made right. You committed crimes against humanity, you knew better, and you didn’t have to. Screw you and good riddance. Spend the rest of your life in penance.
— ProTip (@alt_localgov) April 7, 2019
— Elizabeth Thorp (@ElizabethEThorp) April 8, 2019
And some questioned how Nielsen could remain loyal to a President who never seemed to reciprocate.
You did all you could to please him and he never hesitated to throw you under the bus. I have no idea why y’all act this way over such man of no soul and low character.
— Angie Reynolds (@KizzyMae1969) April 7, 2019
— 👑 krownjules 👑 (@krownjules) April 7, 2019
On Monday afternoon, Nielsen made her first public statement:
“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 support the homeland.”
“As you know, DHS has a vast array of missions. I want to make sure that we execute them all with excellence through the transition. I share the President’s goal of securing the border.”
No word yet on Nielsen’s future plans or her successor.
Trump: You’re fired! You’re fired! You’re fired! You’re f…
[his voice fades as camera slowly pans out to reveal Trump totally alone in the world, shouting at no one] pic.twitter.com/0Nd77h49fK
— The Volatile Mermaid (@OhNoSheTwitnt) April 8, 2019