Former Virginia Attorney General and Nokesville resident Ken Cuccinelli has been named acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service.
Cuccinelli, who also ran an unsuccessful bid for Virginia governor against Democrat Terry McAuliffe in 2013, is an outspoken supporter of President Donald Trump’s, which drew "deep opposition from key Senate Republicans," the Associated Press reports.
It’s unclear if Trump will nominate Cuccinelli for the permanent position, which would require Senate confirmation.
"As the former head of the Senate Conservatives Fund, Cuccinelli has been highly critical of Senate GOP leadership, including once advocating for the removal of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his entire leadership team," the AP reported.
Facing an uphill battle for Senate confirmation, the Trump administration may simply opt to keep Cuccinelli in the acting position, working around rules governing vacancies, the AP wrote.
Democrats voiced strong opposition to the choice Monday.
"Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, called Cuccinelli 'an anti-immigrant fringe figure that has no business' helming a key component of the nation’s immigration system," the AP wrote.
Citizenship and Immigration Services is the agency responsible for legal immigration, including benefits and visas.