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Senate confirms Mayorkas as Biden's homeland security chief; first Latino to hold position

Biden Cabinet National Security Alejandro Mayorkas
Posted at 1:32 PM, Feb 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-02 15:32:09-05

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has confirmed Alejandro Mayorkas as President Joe Biden’s homeland security secretary. He's the first Latino to fill the post, and the first immigrant to do so.

The department is central to the Biden administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, a sweeping Russia-linked cyber hack and domestic extremism.

Mayorkas is expected to lead a broad policy overhaul of an agency that was accused of being deeply politicized as it carried out President Donald Trump’s initiatives on immigration and law enforcement.

His nomination had been stalled in the Senate by Republicans who had questions about Biden’s plans for immigration policy. He also faced questions over his management of an investor visa program under President Barack Obama.