'No Soft Landing': Former DHS Head Kirstjen Nielsen Leaves Atlantic Ideas Festival Stage After Outrage From Grassroots Movement

Grassroots outrage apparently led Kirstjen Nielson, the former head of the Department of Homeland Security, to bow out of the Atlantic Ideas Festival Friday—but it’s unlikely to represent more than a Phyrric victory over the mainstreaming of the President Donald Trump administration. 

Critics pointed to Nielsen’s oversight of the department’s acceleration of Trump’s war on immigrants, including the administration’s family separation policy. 

“No one from Trump’s administration should get a soft landing to sanitize their actions while supporting and pushing forward a white nationalist, fascist agenda,” advocacy group CREDO Action said in a statement. 

The Atlantic announced on September 17 that Nielsen would join the festival, where she would be interviewed about “the Trump administration’s immigration policy, which she implemented as Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.”

The decision came under fire from progressives, who continued to criticize The Atlantic even after the company said on Twitter Friday that “Nielsen’s team has let us know that she is no longer able to participate in the interview.”

“Good—but she never should have been invited in the first place,” wrote daily kos author Gabe Ortiz. “Nielsen’s role in implementing the administration’s inhumane family separation policy will be remembered as one of the darkest times in modern U.S. history.”

Bend the Arc: Jewish Action agreed.

“Glad she’s not getting this platform to rehabilitate her image, but she shouldn’t have ever been invited,” the group tweeted.

SCROLL TO CONTINUE WITH CONTENT