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Carper statement on vote opposing Wolf as DHS secretary

Delaware News Desk
Sen. Tom Carper, D-Delaware, a senior member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released a statement Sept. 30 after opposing the nomination of Chad Wolf to serve as secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

Sen. Tom Carper, D-Delaware, a senior member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released a statement Sept. 30 after opposing the nomination of Chad Wolf to serve as secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

Wolf has served in this role in an acting capacity for 10 months but has never been confirmed by the Senate. Carper has been outspoken about the need for the highest positions at DHS, the third-largest federal agency, to be filled expeditiously and the need for the president to nominate, and the Senate to vote on, a permanent secretary of Homeland Security.

“As a former governor, I understand the importance of an executive being able to choose his or her team,” said Carper. “Every president has a right to nominate well-qualified individuals to lead our federal agencies and, in our system, the Senate has the authority to consider those nominees and assess their qualifications. What is chiefly important is that nominees serve with honesty and integrity in the best interests of the American people and protect the institutions they are called to lead.

“Unfortunately, President Trump seems determined to undermine the independence of the Department of Homeland Security,” continued Carper. “He has done his level best to politicize law enforcement agencies tasked with protecting federal buildings; to mistreat and target migrants and those who seek asylum at our shores; and to undermine the work of officials tasked with securing our elections.”

“There’s no question that any leader hoping to run DHS independently would face difficulty under this administration,” continued Carper. “Unfortunately, Mr. Wolf has proven no different. In the ten months he has served as acting secretary, Mr. Wolf simply has not shown a willingness to stand up to this president. And in responses to questions related to his nomination, Mr. Wolf did not provide straight answers as to his own views on the role of this critical agency he now seeks to lead.”

“This department, and this administration, demand an independent and experienced leader who can serve as a check on the president’s worst impulses,” continued Carper. “I do not believe Mr. Wolf has proven himself to be that leader. So while I pray Mr. Wolf will succeed in this role, I cannot support his nomination today.”