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Tag: President Biden

Biden Picks Tucson Police Chief Magnus to Head CBP

Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus, picked to lead CBP.

By Steve Neavling

President Biden is nominating Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus to lead U.S. Customs and Border Protection. 

Magnus, who has served as Tucson’s police chief since 2016, is a vocal critic of former President Trump’s immigration policies and a supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement. 

If confirmed by the Senate, Magnus has a tough job ahead of him as the nation grapples with a border crisis and the separation of migrant children from their families. 

Magnus also would be the first openly gay CBP commissioner. 

On Monday, Biden announced his pick to lead the DEA – former New Jersey Attorney General Anne Milgram.

Biden Picks former N.J. AG Anne Milgram to Lead DEA

Former New Jersey AG Anne Milgram

By Steve Neavling

President Biden on Monday nominated Anne Milgram, a former New Jersey attorney general, to head the DEA. 

If Biden’s nomination is confirmed, Milgram would become the first politically appointed leader since the Obama administration. Several acting administrators served in the top role under former President Donald Trump.  

Milgram served as New Jersey attorney general from 2007 to 2010. She teaches at the New York University School of Law and serves as a special counsel for Lowenstein Sandler, a law firm. 

The nomination comes in the midst of an opioid crisis and the legalization of recreational marijuana in many states. 

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., said Biden made “a great choice” nominating Milgram. 

“She will be an excellent DEA Administrator, who will work diligently to fight drug trafficking and keep dangerous substances like fentanyl off our streets,” he said on Twitter.

Biden Wants Funding Increase to Investigate White Supremacy within CBP, ICE

Photo via Border Patrol

By Steve Neavling

President Biden’s budget proposal seeks to increase oversight of Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement to investigate complaints of white supremacy. 

Under the proposal, workforce oversight offices within CBP and ICE would receive $470 million, a 22% increase in funding, Reuters reports.

The idea is to ensure timely investigations of workforce complaints, including “those related to white supremacy or ideological and non-ideological beliefs.”

The impetus for the increased oversight wasn’t immediately clear, but the Biden administration has prioritized combating domestic extremism, which a Homeland Security report in 2020 described as “the most persistent and lethal threat” to the U.S. 

Biden to Nominate Gun Control Advocate As Permanent ATF Director

Former ATF Agent David Chipman, via Twitter.

By Steve Neavling

President Biden is expected to nominate David Chipman, a prominent gun control advocate, to lead the ATF, The New York Times reports.

Biden’s pick, David Chipman, is a gun owner, former ATF agent and senior policy adviser at Giffords, a gun control advocacy group led by former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz. Chipman has advocated for gun restrictions, including a ban on assault weapons. 

Biden is expected to announce his nomination today. 

Biden has faced pressure by gun control groups to pick someone to head the ATF, which has been without a permanent director since 2015 as the nation continues to grapple with mass shootings. 

As vice president, Biden recommended in 2013 that President Obama pick a Senate-confirmed ATF director. Obama followed through with the confirmation of B. Todd Jones in 2013, but Jones resigned in 2015, and the agency has been without a permanent director since. 

The current acting director, appointed by President Trump, is Regina Lombardo. 

Whether Biden can muster the 51 votes required to confirm a permanent leader is an open question. Republicans have blocked ATF candidates who were far friendlier to the pro-gun base. 

President Biden Nominates Ronald Davis to Serve As Head of U.S. Marshals Service

Ronald Davis with President Obama. (Photo via Twitter)

By Steve Neavling

President Biden on Friday nominated Ronald Davis to serve as director of the U.S. Marshals Service. 

Davis is a former police chief who served in the Obama administration as director of the Justice Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS).  

Davis has a long career in law enforcement. He served for eight years as chief of the East Palo Alto Police Department and 20 years with the Oakland Police Department in California. 

In December 2014, President Obama appointed him to serve as executive director of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing. 

“Davis was recognized for his innovative community efforts and for working collaboratively with the community to dramatically reduce crime and violence in a city once named as the murder capital of the United States,” Biden’s administration said in a news release.

Davis is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Reducing Racial Inequalities in the Criminal Justices System Committee. 

Davis received a bachelor’s degree from Southern Illinois University and completed the Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program at Harvard University Kennedy School of Government.

Biden Administration Searches for First Permanent ATF Director Since 2015

By Steve Neavling

President Biden may soon pick a nominee to lead the ATF, which has been without a permanent director since 2015 as the nation continues to grapple with mass shootings. 

The New York Times reports that Biden’s administration is interviewing potential candidates, and NBC News says the president has a “shortlist” of final candidates.

“The administration is going to revitalize A.T.F. and ensure that our guns laws are vigorously enforced,” Michael Gwin, a Biden spokesman, told The New York Times.

As vice president, Biden recommended in 2013 that President Obama pick a Senate-confirmed ATF director. Obama followed through with the confirmation of B. Todd Jones in 2013, but Jones resigned in 2015, and the agency has been without a permanent director since. 

The current acting director, appointed by President Trump, is Regina Lombardo. 

Picking a permanent director is among the Biden administration’s priorities, spokesman Michael Gwin told NBC News in a statement. 

“President Biden is committed to reducing gun violence both, through the policies he pursues and the personnel he places in key positions at agencies like ATF,” Gwin said. “The Administration is going to revitalize ATF and ensure that our guns laws are vigorously enforced so we can keep illegal firearms off our streets and save lives.” 

No candidates have been identified. 

Committee to Vote Today on Advancing Merrick Garland for AG Confirmation

Judge Merrick Garland, via White House.

By Steve Neavling

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote today on advancing Merrick Garland, President Biden’s pick for attorney general, to the full Senate for confirmation. 

Garland has bipartisan support and is expected to receive the committee’s approval for a full Senate vote. 

Garland testified before the committee last week during a two-day confirmation hearing. 

Garland, 68, rose to national prominence in 2016 when President Obama nominated him to the U.S. Supreme Court, but Republicans denied him a hearing. 

Garland was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1997. 

Garland is a graduate of Harvard University’s college and law school.  

Garland Moves Closer to Confirmation for Attorney General

By Steve Neavling

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday that he plans to support Merrick Garland’s nomination for attorney general. 

When asked if he expected to vote to confirm Garland, McConnell told POLITICO, “I do.”

Garland testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday in the second day of his two-day confirmation hearing. 

During the hearing, all five witnesses praised Garland. 

The committee is expected to vote on his confirmation Monday, and the full Senate plans to vote next week. 

Garland, 68, rose to national prominence in 2016 when President Obama nominated him to the U.S. Supreme Court, but Republicans denied him a hearing. 

With Democrats now in control of the U.S. Senate, Republican won’t be able to block his nomination to serve as attorney general.  

Garland was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1997. 

Garland is a graduate of Harvard University’s college and law school.