President Trump confirmed Friday that he has withdrawn the nomination of longtime border official Ron Vitiello to lead U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Vitiello is currently deputy director of the agency and serving as its acting director.
The Associated Press reported earlier that a notice was sent to members of Congress that Vitiello’s nomination would be withdrawn on Thursday. But some officials speculated that the notice was sent in error.
Trump told reporters Friday that his administration will “go in a tougher direction,” but did not explain what that means.
The job requires Senate confirmation. Vitiello had cleared one committee, and a second committee was considering his nomination. Vitiello remains deputy director.
Vitiello has been a law enforcement agent for more than 30 years, starting in 1985 with the U.S. Border Patrol.