Kirstjen Nielsen. Photo: Aurora Samperio/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The now-ousted Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and ICE director Ron Vitiello put a stop to a secret White House plan to arrest up to 10,000 migrant parents and children in 10 major cities, the Washington Post reports, citing 7 current and former Department of Homeland Security officials.

Details: The plan, eagerly supported by senior White House adviser Stephen Miller and ICE deputy director Matthew Albence, involved "dramatic, highly visible mass arrests" and accelerated deportations in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and other cities — part of the Trump administration's effort to send a deterrence message to migrants crossing the border after its failed "zero tolerance" policy.

  • Nielsen and Vietiello reportedly challenged the plan in the weeks before their departures over concerns about "a lack of preparation" by ICE agents, "the risk of public outrage and worries that it would divert resources from the border," per the Post.
  • Stephen Miller declined to comment to Axios.

The big picture: Nielsen, who became one of the faces of the Trump administration's much-maligned family separation policy, was forced to resign last month after a tumultuous tenure as one of the president's main immigration punching bags. Trump long felt that Nielsen wasn't "tough enough" when it came to defending the border and kicking illegal immigrants out of the U.S.

  • Her departure was followed by aggressive changes to the administration's immigration policies, some of which are legally and politically dubious, according to some officials.

Go deeper: Inside Trump's hardline new border plan

Go deeper

Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 32,471,119 — Total deaths: 987,593 — Total recoveries: 22,374,557Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 7,032,524 — Total deaths: 203,657 — Total recoveries: 2,727,335 — Total tests: 99,483,712Map.
  3. States: "We’re not closing anything going forward": Florida fully lifts COVID restaurant restrictions — Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam tests positive for coronavirus.
  4. Health: Young people accounted for 20% of cases this summer.
  5. Business: Coronavirus has made airports happier places The expiration of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance looms.
  6. Education: Where bringing students back to school is most risky.
Mike Allen, author of AM
7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Biden pushes unity message in new TV wave

A fresh Joe Biden ad, "New Start," signals an effort by his campaign to make unity a central theme, underscoring a new passage in his stump speech that says he won't be a president just for Democrats but for all Americans.

What he's saying: The ad — which began Friday night, and is a follow-up to "Fresh Start" — draws from a Biden speech earlier in the week in Manitowoc, Wisconsin:

Trump prepares to announce Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court replacement

Judge Amy Coney Barrett. Photo: Matt Cashore/Notre Dame University via Reuters

President Trump is preparing to nominate federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett of Indiana, a favorite of both the social conservative base and Republican elected officials, to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Republican sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Barrett would push the already conservative court further and harder to the right, for decades to come, on the most important issues in American politics — from abortion to the limits of presidential power. If confirmed, she would give conservatives a 6-3 majority on the high court.