Homeland Security Chief Nearly Resigned This Week

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During the meeting, Trump yelled about the United States' porous border and said more needed to be done to fix it.

Throughout the interview, Trump blamed Nielsen for what he said was collapse to fasten US borders, " the newspaper mentioned the officials. According to the Times, the president had viewed Nielsen and other D.H.S. officials as resistant to the family-separation policy, but the West Wing ultimately won out. "These are complex issues and I will continue to direct the Department to do all we can to implement the President's security-focused agenda".

According to DHS data, there were about 30,186 total cases of foreign nationals claiming credible fear and thus requesting asylum in the USA between October and December 2017 - at the same time that an amnesty for illegal aliens was being considered by Congress and President Trump's administration.

Trump, she told the Times, is "rightly frustrated that existing loopholes and the lack of congressional action have prevented this administration from fully securing the border".

Tyler Houlton, a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, disputed that Nielsen had drafted a resignation letter and was close to resigning, calling those assertions "false". "I share his frustration", Nielsen said in a statement.

The episode, first reported by The New York Times, left Nielsen on the verge of resignation, according to the paper, which also said Nielsen, the former deputy White House chief of staff, had drafted - but not submitted - a resignation letter.

Trump won the 2016 election largely on his promise to crack down on illegal immigration and build a wall that would totally shut down the flow of immigrants.

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Trump has asked for frequent updates about the number of people attempting to cross the border illegally and has grown increasingly irritated at the recent trends.

While border apprehensions dipped past year to their lowest levels ever, the numbers have been ticking up in recent months, returning to more typical historical levels.

"Border security is the most basic and necessary responsibility of a sovereign nation", she continued.

During his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump fervently pushed for immigration reform by outlining bold plans, including the construction of a massive wall stretching across the US-Mexico border. A conviction for illegal entry carries a maximum penalty of six months in custody for first-time crossers, though they usually do far less time, and two years for repeat offenses.

Trump's entire cabinet reportedly bore witness to the scolding, which the Times said was just a portion of a long rant about how the administration on the whole was falling short of its stated goal to tighten border security and curb illegal immigration.

In late April, the president tasked Nielsen's Department of Homeland Security to contain and break up the traveling migrants.

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