Neither the White House nor the Homeland Security Department ever acknowledged that Sheriff Clarke was actually offered a job at the agency. But the sheriffâs critics were quick to denounce him.
âThe appointment of Sheriff Clarke to a position intended to build partnership and engagement is not a decision made by someone interested in partnership or engagement,â Chris Abele, the Milwaukee County executive, said in a statement at the time.
Sheriff Clarkeâs announcement that he would take the Homeland Security job came just weeks after a grand jury recommended criminal charges against several staff members at a jail run by Sheriff Clarke in connection with the death of an inmate. Then, just days after Mr. Clarkeâs appearance on the radio show, CNN reported that Mr. Clarke had failed to properly attribute sources at least 47 times in his 2013 masterâs thesis on national security.
In June, Sheriff Clarke notified John F. Kelly, the homeland security secretary at the time, of his decision not to accept the senior position that had been offered to him, according to an adviser to the sheriff.
âSheriff Clarke is 100 percent committed to the success of President Trump, and believes his skills could be better utilized to promote the presidentâs agenda in a more aggressive role,â the adviser, Craig Peterson, said in a statement at the time.
Mr. Peterson said then that Mr. Clarke had met with President Trump to discuss other roles â both inside and outside the government â that the sheriff could take on to help carry out Mr. Trumpâs agenda.
As recently as Sunday, the president tweeted an endorsement of Mr. Clarkeâs book, âCop Under Fire,â calling the sheriff âa great guy.â
Mr. Clarke, 61, a former Milwaukee police officer, had been the Milwaukee County sheriff since 2002. He was appointed to the post by the stateâs Republican governor, Scott McCallum, that year and then elected that same year as a Democrat; he was re-elected three more times, most recently in 2014.