FEMA chief says he won’t resign over travel investigation
Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long said Sunday that he has no plans to resign amid a Department of Homeland Security probe into his travel using government resources.
The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the White House considered replacing Long before Hurricane Florence hit the East Coast. However, chief of staff John Kelly ultimately decided to leave Long in his role until the internal watchdog’s final report is completed, a source familiar with the matter told the paper.
Politico also reported last week that there were conflicting accounts of whether Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen asked Long to consider resigning, with one official familiar with the meeting telling the news site that she did, but he declined to voluntarily leave his position.
Long told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that Nielsen has not asked for his resignation and that he’s cooperating with the DHS inspector general’s investigation.
“Secretary Nielsen has never asked me to resign,” Long said. “We have a very functional and professional relationship. We talk every day. We are both solely focused on Florence.”
Asked if he plans to resign, Long replied, “No. No, no, no, I’m here to serve my country every day. That’s all I do.”
A senior administration official confirmed to CNN last week that there is an ongoing investigation includes, but may not be limited to, whether Long misused government vehicles and personnel for his six-hour drives between his home in North Carolina and FEMA headquarters in Washington, DC. Politico first reported the existence of the investigation.
Also on Sunday, Long told CBS’s “Face the Nation” that he has run the agency “the same way it ran for anybody before me.”
“I have never made — I would never intentionally violate any rules that I was aware of,” he added.
Former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt and former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price resigned over investigations into their misuse of taxpayer funds for travel and other controversies.