Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf on Thursday took aim at “some supporters of the president,” saying their shocking attack on the U.S. Capitol a day earlier was “tragic and sickening.”
He specifically called on his boss, President Trump, to denounce the attack.
Mr. Wolf, however, said he will not be joining the stream of administration officials heading for the door in protest, feeling his presence is needed to helm the department through to the inauguration.
“I will remain in my position until the end of the administration to ensure the department’s focus remains on the serious threats facing our country and an orderly transition to President-elect Biden’s DHS team,” Mr. Wolf said.
Mr. Wolf was appointed acting secretary by Mr. Trump in 2019 and had been a strong defender of the White House’s actions over the past year as the president berated racial justice protesters and “antifa.”
Mr. Wolf said Thursday he now finds himself having to condemn the president’s own supporters for the same behavior.
“While I have consistently condemned political violence on both sides of the aisle, specifically violence directed at law enforcement, we now see some supporters of the President using violence as a means to achieve political ends,” he said.
“These violent actions are unconscionable, and I implore the president and all elected officials to strongly condemn the violence that took place yesterday,” he said.
Soon after Mr. Wolf’s statement, the White House announced Mr. Trump had withdrawn his nomination to become secretary.