U.S. border chief resigns after being instructed to go away

U.S. Customs and Border Safety Commissioner Chris Magnus resigned Saturday, a day after he revealed that Biden administration officers had needed him to go away his position.

Magnus had mentioned Friday that he wouldn’t adjust to the request to step down, which he mentioned got here from Homeland Safety Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas. Magnus, who is named a progressive legislation enforcement chief, struggled to ascertain a public profile after his Senate affirmation in December.

The choice to resign got here after a tumultuous week within the Division of Homeland Safety, during which Magnus went public in an interview with The Instances in regards to the order from administration officers to go away his place as border chief.

“I resigned because I believe this decision provides me with the best path for advancing my commitment to professional, innovative, and community-engaged policing,” he mentioned in a press release to The Instances. “I appreciate having had this opportunity to serve and to work with many dedicated colleagues.”

Strain was on Magnus as Republicans have pointed to the Biden administration’s struggles to maintain up with an growing variety of migrants crossing the border.

Within the final fiscal yr, which resulted in September, Customs and Border Safety recorded greater than 2 million encounters with migrants on the border — a file excessive.

Karine Jean-Pierre, the White Home press secretary, mentioned President Biden accepted the resignation and thanked him for his service. Mayorkas instructed CBP staffers in regards to the transfer in an electronic mail Saturday and knowledgeable them that Troy Miller, a profession CBP official, would take over as head of the company in an performing position.

In a dialog between the 2 males on Wednesday, as recounted by Magnus, Mayorkas mentioned that he had misplaced confidence in him and if he didn’t resign, Mayorkas would advocate that Biden hearth him.

The subsequent day, John Tien, the second in command on the Division of Homeland Safety, instructed Magnus that he ought to resign or else be fired throughout the subsequent few days, Magnus mentioned.

“I expressed to him that I felt there was no justification for me to resign when I still cared deeply about the work I was doing and felt that that work was focused on the things I was hired to do in the first place,” Magnus mentioned.

One Biden administration official mentioned that Magnus was frequently absent from conferences on border coverage and was not closely concerned within the decision-making on key border insurance policies. The official requested anonymity as a result of the official was not licensed to talk publicly in regards to the challenge.

Magnus mentioned he was not initially invited to conferences on border coverage however later attended virtually all key conferences.

On Twitter, he has been vocal about immigration points, writing that Title 42, a measure instituted throughout the Trump administration that permits border brokers to shortly flip again migrants, “comes at a heavy cost to many asylum seekers.” Magnus has tried to alter the tradition of Customs and Border Safety, which incorporates the Border Patrol. After criticism about offensive humor throughout the ranks, together with Fb posts that made enjoyable of lifeless migrants and lawmakers, Magnus has clamped down on social media exercise.

His objectives included including extra feminine officers and tightening guidelines for pursuing migrants fleeing in automobiles.

Magnus rose to nationwide prominence as chief of the Richmond Police Division within the Bay Space, and later turning into chief in Tucson. He mentioned on Friday that a few of the prime leaders at Homeland Safety didn’t “understand what reform even looked like within a law enforcement organization.”