A Wisconsin sheriff has removed his name from consideration for a post at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). David A. Clarke, Jr., who serves in Milwaukee County, had been vying for a position as an assistant secretary. The withdrawal was reported by the Washington Post newspaper last Saturday.
Clarke’s adviser, Craig Peterson, said the sheriff notified DHS Secretary John F. Kelly of his withdrawal on Friday. Peterson added that Clarke is deeply committed to the Trump presidency but thinks his skills would be put to better use in a different role.
It was expected that Clarke would begin his duties with the DHS in late June. A source inside the administration said that Clarke became frustrated by extensive delays regarding the appointment, and that was what led to his withdrawal.
Although the sheriff supported Trump during his campaign, he has also been the center of controversy. At one point, Clarke was accused of plagiarism, and he faced intense scrutiny after an inmate died in his jail after allegedly going without water for a week.
The DHS issued a formal statement regarding Clarke’s withdrawal from consideration and wished him well on his future endeavors.
President Trump traveled to Wisconsin on Tuesday to meet personally with Clarke. During the visit, the pair discussed other possible roles for the sheriff that would support the administration.
Peterson said Clarke is considering his options with Trump and in other roles outside the government. He added that Clarke told DHS Secretary Kelly that he was honored to have been considered for such an important position and that he appreciated the opportunity. Clarke also said he fully supports both the agency and Trump.
The Washington Post said it had a copy of the letter offering Clarke a position with the title “Assistant Secretary for Office of Partnership and Engagement/State and Local Law Enforcement.” If Clarke had not withdrawn, the Office of Personnel Management would have had to approve his appointment.