WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released the following statement today after the announcement that President-elect Donald Trump has selected General John Kelly, former commander of U.S. Southern Command, to serve as the next secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“I sincerely congratulate my friend General Kelly on his selection to be the next secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. General Kelly is a man of steady leadership who has years of experience working with our neighbors in Latin America as commander of U.S. Southern Command. Having worked with General Kelly personally on efforts to address the root causes of the surge in migration of children and families to our southern border, I am encouraged by his ability to build relationships with our partners in the region. I also applaud his recognition of the primary role that our country’s demand for illicit drugs plays in fueling violence and instability in South and Central America. The work General Kelly has done to cut the supply of illicit drugs traveling through Central America and Mexico into our country has aided law enforcement efforts here at home and helped to reduce the threat these drugs pose to public health.
“The next DHS Secretary will face critical challenges on a number of fronts, including ever-evolving threats in cyber space, increased challenges in emergency preparedness due to more frequent and deadly extreme weather events caused by climate change, and efforts to continue the progress made by Secretary Johnson in improving management and efficiency and improving morale across the department. I am grateful to General Kelly for his honorable service to our nation and look forward to discussing with him during the confirmation process the importance of our continuing commitments in Central America and the department’s ongoing efforts to address emerging challenges. I also look forward to discussing the moral obligation we have to fix our broken immigration system and help the more than 11 million people already living in this country come out of the shadows and fully pursue the American dream.”