Carl Risch, the Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs reportedly resigned over the weekend with December 21 as the effective date. A source told us that Risch called into a meeting and announced it to CA leadership, then left the meeting. He has reportedly gone to the Justice Department. A second source confirmed the resignation.
What the what?
Wait, it looks like he is now the Deputy Director of the Executive Office for Immigration Review. The description of the office is here. Click here for the CFR on the OIR. Is this a position he can keep after President-Elect Joe Biden’s inauguration? (Prior to his CA appointment, Risch previously served as Acting Chief of Staff in the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services. He was also the Field Office Director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, at the American Embassy in Seoul, South Korea).
We understand that Consular Affairs, the most public facing arm of the State Department, often trotted out by senior leaders of the Department when they needed a good story is “penniless as visa demand has all basically all but ceased.”
“Systems are in danger of failing,” we were warned. There are concerns on how a fee-funded bureau could to stay afloat without help from Congress.
Last week, CA reportedly sent out a cable to its overseas posts reminding people that “despite the dire financial situation”, consular officials must still conduct prison visits and provide emergency services.
Folks are anxious on what’s coming.
Today, Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs Carl Risch was sworn-in by Secretary Tillerson at the Washington Passport Agency. pic.twitter.com/MYcPEF2s7w
— Department of State (@StateDept) August 31, 2017