DHS Sec. Kirstjen Nielsen forced out amid spat over border security

In a tweet Sunday, President Trump announced DHS Sec. Nielsen is leaving her position and being replaced by current U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan.
5:16 | 04/08/19

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Transcript for DHS Sec. Kirstjen Nielsen forced out amid spat over border security
We begin with Washington big news over the weekend tears in Nelson is gone did she resigned or was she fired. I wanna go to Karen Travers at the White House we also have John Cohen former DHS official on the phone. Karen I wanna start with you how did this happen and how did it go down exactly. I. Then on Sunday evening Kimberly Kirsten Nielsen released a resignation. Letter but hours before that. She met here at the white house with the president's talk about border security we're told this is a meeting that she requested. To sit down with the president not a conversation about what direction they might go in the future instead she left that meeting with the president without her job. She did release a resignation letter but Tim really let's be clear here the president. Force her out as head of DHS and street's sins are from the president had directed it Nielsen had been simmering for awhile he has certainly held her personally responsible. For what he sees as the crisis at the southern border that uptick in my grade crossings. And they reached a boiling point we're told in recent weeks a lot of angry conversations frustration boiling over in meetings. And now Nielsen is out at DHS. I write tell and I want to move to you because you know Karen just said it she was kicked out because of this. The uptick at the border but is Kearse irresponsible for the worsening conditions. Yet any Karen. Certain that the now they had that clearly the president was increasingly frustrated. We have these deteriorating conditions at the border. Conditions today are much worse and they were in the 2016. I think one could say that. The way in which the federal government has responded Katie. Month long. Increase in people of presenting at the border are requesting asylum. Is partially to blame blame but you know a lot president has the right to be frustrated he really need to take a good hard look at the policy is. And the approach to dealing with the border they approach that they put in place to deal with immigration. Two to really get why he should be frustrated those policies did not approach. That are causing the problems of the border not necessarily. The operational activity of the men and women of the HS. And John now we have this acting secretary can you tell us little bit about Kevin Mack a lean and. Yeah I know Kevin very well he will work closely together without doubt the department. He is Smart hip operational experience he understands the border in the mission of Customs and Border Protection. But he also understands the mission the Department of Homeland Security more broadly. He worked very well let others he's he's a stable. Studying force. He can exhibit. Effective leadership but he will face the same challenges. Secretary Nelson in the respect that. We have a White House that has very strong views on how immigration enforcement should be conducted and how border security should be achieved. And those views sometimes are at odds with what the allows. By the government to do and the operational realities at the border so he will have to balance. You know improving. The hope department of homeland security and operational. Response to current conditions at the border with the intense pressure at that will continue to come from the White House. And in some degree of micromanagement of the department by the White House. And Karen what are the next steps and end this whole process I mean she was just down there what happens now. Yet it was interesting that she did make that trip on Friday with the president to collects through California the southern border there with Mexico and we're told it is on the way back from that trip when Nielsen was on her way back to Washington where she requested that meeting with the president yesterday. Nielsen will actually stay on until Wednesday resigned last night did until Wednesday to help with the transition. But as John mentioned you know it's not clear what the policies are that Kevin Mack a leaning can come in now and implement or bring with him that would satisfy the president's frustration. Certainly there's been in pleading from the administration for congress to get more involved it's not on one person to fix this at the border. But certainly the president for sixteen months really took a lot of that anger out on Kirstie Nielsen. And now they're somebody else stepping in but for them to be able to fix this immediately your turn the situation around a dime it's a very big challenges. And can can we just address the fact that there are a lot of acting secretary secretary than this administration right now right right now there are three significant acting secretaries you have an acting secretary of defense acting secretary of the interior and now I DHS and the reason those three positions are so important. It begin their in the agencies that are directly. Implementing and monitoring the border situation they're the ones the president is going to turn to. As this crisis continues in the president's viewer gets worse. So the fact that you have people who are not confirmed by the senate look for that to become something that congress starts pointing to. Also speaks to the heat wave the president has approached policymaking. And the way he's handled personnel here at one point a couple of months ago it was a third of the cabinet were not senate confirms they had acting before their title. I write Karen and John thank you so much we appreciate the updates.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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