Nov. 2 (UPI) — President Donald Trump appeared to announced plans to tap Chad Wolf as the new acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security on Friday, but the department indicated the president may have misspoken.
Trump responded to rumors of his intent to install Wolf as head of the department during remarks to reporters on the South Lawn.
“Well he’s right now acting and we’ll see what happens. We have great people in there,” Trump said.
The president later clarified that Kevin McAleenan is still acting head of the department, and didn’t confirm when his departure would be. Trump announced McAleenan’s departure as acting secretary in October. He was never formally nominated to serve in the position.
Responding to CNN’s request for comments on the news, the Department of Homeland Security only confirmed McAleenan and Wolf’s current roles.
“McAleenan is the acting secretary. Wolf is the acting undersecretary for policy,” a spokesperson said.
If named acting secretary, Wolf would be the fifth person to head the department under the Trump administration. McAleenan replaced Kirstjen Nielsen, who resigned in April. Before her, Elaine Duke served as acting secretary after John Kelly’s July 2017 departure to serve as chief of staff.
Wolf is currently acting under secretary of Homeland Security for strategy, policy and plans.