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Trump names Mark Morgan as head of ICE

By Daniel Uria
Trump names Mark Morgan as head of ICE
Mark Morgan was named head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement on Sunday. Photo courtesy U.S. Customs and Border Protection

May 5 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump on Sunday named Mark Morgan as the new head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Trump hailed Morgan, a former FBI agent and chief of the U.S. Border Patrol, as a "true believer and American Patriot" as he introduced him as the newest leader of the agency.

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"I am pleased to inform all of those who believe in a strong, fair and sound immigration policy that Mark Morgan will be joining the Trump Administration as the head of our hard working men and women of ICE," Trump wrote on Twitter.

Morgan had previously served as chief of the U.S. Border Patrol, including the last few months of the Obama administration, before being asked to resign days after Trump took office in January 2017 while facing criticism regarding his qualifications.

RELATED Asylum seekers from 100 countries in detention face shrinking chance of bond

Morgan has publicly endorsed Trump's declaration of a national emergency at the border, including support for the wall.

"The president had no choice, Congress has failed, they continue to fail," Morgan said in a February interview with CNN.

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The Trump administration has been seeking to fill the position of ICE director since the former acting directer, Thomas Homan, retired in June of last year.

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Trump withdrew his nomination of then-Acting ICE Director Ronald Vitiello to permanently lead the agency last month, saying he wanted to go in a "tougher direction."

Kirstjen Nielsen left as the Homeland Security security last month reportedly because she did not do enough to secure the nation's southern border with Mexico. She was replaced by Kevin McAleenan, who served as the Customs and Border Protection commissioner.

RELATED White House asks Congress for $4.5B for aid, security at border

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