The acting secretary for the Department of Homeland Security, Chad Wolf, resigned Monday following the violent, pro-Trump rally at the Capitol the week prior.

“I am saddened to take this step, as it was my intention to serve the Department until the end of this Administration,” Wolf said in a letter to department staff. “Unfortunately, this action is warranted by recent events, including the ongoing and meritless court rulings regarding the validity of my authority as Acting Secretary. These events and concerns increasingly serve to divert attention and resources away from the important work of the Department in this critical time of a transition of power,” he said.

Wolf, who had served in an acting capacity since November 2019, has been replaced with Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Peter Gaynor.

His resignation comes less than two weeks before President-elect Joe Biden‘s inauguration on Jan. 20, which is expected to pose new security threats.


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While Wolf did not explicitly mention the violence at the Capitol in his resignation letter, he had publicly condemned the riot — which left five dead — and called on President Donald Trump to do the same. Shortly thereafter, the White House withdrew its nomination of Wolf to serve as the full DHS secretary.

On Wednesday, two days after his resignation, Wolf told ABC News that Trump should take responsibility for some of the events that occurred at the Capitol.

“The president’s words matter and they do,” Wolf said. “He certainly has some level of responsibility for at least the words that he said.”

He continued, “I’ve talked about my disappointment in wishing that he had come out sooner to condemn the violence and just talk more vocally about that.”

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