When a person is assigned an important role such as the Department of Homeland Security secretary, it is expected that they are qualified and capable of performing the duties the role carries with it. Surprisingly, an immigration advocacy group along with Texas Democrats are saying that this isn’t happening in certain instances. The Texas Tribune reported that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has determined that “Chad Wolf, acting Department of Homeland Security secretary, and Ken Cuccinelli, a senior official performing deputy secretary duties, aren’t legally qualified to hold those posts.”
After the GAO announced its findings, the advocacy group, United We Dream, began pushing for immigration reform as this discovery “calls into question the latest guidance from the DHS on the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program that was initiated in 2012.” You see, Wolf, who has held his position since late last year, recently began instructing staff to “take all appropriate actions to reject all pending and future initial requests for DACA” as well as encourage them to “terminate or deny deferred action at any time when immigration officials determine termination or denial of deferred action is appropriate.”
However, after the GAO determined Wolf is not legally qualified to serve the role he has been assigned, Greisa Martínez Rosas, the executive director of United We Dream, says that “should render that order invalid.” In a statement, Rosas said, “What’s clear today from the Government Accountability Office is that Chad Wolf did not have the authority to issue this memo in the first place.”
How did the GAO arrive at the conclusion that it did?
The Texas Tribune cited that in the GAO report, it states that’s Wolf and Cuccinelli “were appointed as a result of reference to an invalid order of succession.” In 2019, former DHS chief Kirstjen Nielsen resigned, yet “the director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency was supposed to succeed her.” However, the report suggests that instead of that happening, “former Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan was named as a replacement.” The report goes on to say the subsequent appointments of Wolf and Cuccinelli “were also improper because they relied on an amended designation made by Mr. McAleenan.”
Although the source points out that the GAO “has no legal authority,” the authors of the report intend on referring their findings to DHS’s inspector general.
Was your DACA application recently denied?
If you believe U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) wrongfully denied your DACA application or an application for a different type of immigration benefit, you are urged to contact the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen to discuss your issue with a Texas immigration attorney. Because the Supreme Court recently ruled to keep the DACA program active, it is important for anyone who was denied these benefits to contact a lawyer who can help them find out why. The Texas immigration lawyers at the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen are highly skilled in immigration law and are qualified and capable of addressing any questions or concerns you may have.
You can reach the Law Office of J. Joseph Cohen at:
310 South St. Mary’s Street, Suite 2100
San Antonio, Texas 78205