The Perseverance of Michael Chertoff

Michael Chertoff survived Katrina and calls for his resignation. How the head of Homeland Security always manages to stay one step ahead of controversy

Ben Baker / Redux for TIME

Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff photographed near the Department of Homeland Security Headquarters in Washington, D.C. on June 19, 2007.

"You have to push through discomfort," says Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Michael Chertoff. We're running along a leafy path on the edge of Washington. I've managed to keep up for the first three miles. But since he's two decades older than I am (he's 53), it's not such an impressive feat. Then in the last 50 yds., Chertoff takes off in a sprint. I'm left looking at his back. When I told this story to one of Chertoff's senior advisers, he smiled and said, "You met the Secretary."

Two years ago, Chertoff traded in a very good job for...

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