WASHINGTON — Members of the House Homeland Security Committee are meeting Tuesday to discuss the Republican-led articles of impeachment v. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas.
House Republicans accuse Mayorkas and the Biden administration of flouting federal immigration laws, and Mayorkas is seeking to become the second Cabinet official in U.S. history to be impeached. Tuesday’s hearing is another step toward a formal vote to impeach Majorca in the full House, and Majority Leader Steve Scalise, R-La., next week.
Majorcans and Democrats pushed back, arguing that the impeachment attempt was political.
According to the first article of impeachment filed by House Republicans, Mayorkas “willfully and systematically refused to comply with federal immigration laws.” Republicans accuse Mallorca of allowing millions of people to enter the country illegally, “many of whom remain in the United States illegally,” according to the articles.
A second article of impeachment accuses him of violating the “public trust” and “willfully” obstructing “lawful oversight of the Department of Homeland Security.”
Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mark Green, R-Tenn. Opening the hearing on Tuesday, he said Mayorkas “deliberately and systematically refused to follow the laws passed by Congress and violated the trust of Congress and the American people. The results have been disastrous and put the lives and livelihoods of all Americans at risk.”
Referring to the impeachment of Donald Trump in the last Congress, Green said that the committee was “meticulous” in its methodology. “Today is a difficult day. We have not taken this day or this process lightly. Secretary Mayorkas’ actions forced our hand,” he said.
Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi, the top Democrat on the panel, countered in his opening statement that “this is a terrible day for the committee, the Constitution of the United States, and our great country … The bogus impeachment of Secretary Mayorkas is a baseless political stunt by extreme MAGA Republicans.”
“In a process akin to throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks, Republicans have developed vague, unprecedented grounds for impeachment of Secretary Mayorkas,” Thompson said. “Failure to obey the law and breach of public trust – not impeachment. The charges the committee will consider today are high crimes and misdemeanors under Article II of the Constitution.”
Asked before the hearing whether the charges against Mayorkas met the necessary requirements for impeachment, Green said: “Absolutely.”
Green said he expects “a lot of procedural motions” and “a united front from our side” at Tuesday’s hearing, which is expected to last several hours.
within one Fox Business In an interview Tuesday, Scalise said the impeachment resolution “will come out of committee tonight.”
“It will be on the floor for a vote by the entire House next week,” he said, providing the most accurate time frame for the impeachment vote.
Mayorkas retracted his letter to Green on Tuesday morning, noting that he had testified before the committee seven times and impeached him. ignoring the offer to testify again on another date.
“The problems with our broken and outdated immigration system are not new. … Our immigration laws are simply not built for 21st century migration patterns,” Mayorkas said, noting that he has been involved in bipartisan talks with senators to reach an agreement on changes to immigration and asylum laws.
“You claim that we have failed to enforce our immigration laws. That’s a lie,” he said, adding that DHS has provided Congress with “hours of testimony, thousands of documents, hundreds of briefings, and much more information that clearly demonstrates how we apply the law.”
Among the data the department shared with House Republicans, Mayorkas wrote that the Biden administration “removed, returned or deported more migrants in three years than the previous Administration did in four years.”
Green responded to Mayorkas’ letter on Tuesday morning, saying his “eleventh-hour response to the committee was inadequate and unbecoming of a Cabinet secretary”.
The articles of impeachment come at the end of a year-long investigation by Republicans on the National Security Committee into the situation at the southern border.
Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, a member of the committee, said Mayorkas “failed to fulfill his oath to protect the nation from all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who twice last year tried to bring bills to impeach Majorca to the floor of the House, said Monday that Republicans “have all the evidence that Majorca willfully violated his oath of office. … We will impeach him tomorrow.”
On Monday, Democrats on the committee released a report accusing Republicans of “misusing the impeachment powers of Congress.”
“The Republicans’ baseless investigation of Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is a politically motivated sham designed to appease extreme MAGA Members and partisan special interest groups,” the Democrats said in the report.
Michael ChertoffSecretary of Homeland Security in the administration of President George W. Bush and constitutional scholars in recent days they have also argued that the GOP investigation has not reached the point of impeachment.
“If the article of impeachment could talk, it would be asking Republicans to stop shaming his name,” said Rep. Dan Goldman, D-N.Y., who was Donald Trump’s first impeachment lawyer before his candidacy. Congress. “There is no betrayal. No bribes. There is no high crime and lawlessness here.”
Goldman, who is currently on the National Security Committee, argued that the impeachment process “doesn’t go through the Judiciary Committee because that committee requires due process for impeachment, and there was no due process.”
Democrats have repeatedly argued that Republicans are resisting the new border policy, which Mallorcas helped negotiate between senators and the administration, because the bill would give President Joe Biden an advantage in the 2024 election.
“They know there’s a bill that would potentially give us a new law to help us on the southwest border. President Trump and many House Republicans are fighting to oppose it because they think it will give President Biden some electoral benefits at the polls,” he said.
Some moderate Republicans said Tuesday they supported impeachment of Majorca. “I intended because we are facing a disaster at the border. And I would say that there are so many laws on the books that he can make or enforce, and he doesn’t.”
Moderate New York Rep. Nick LaLota also plans to vote to impeach the Mallorcans. “He avoided his duty. He broke the trust of the people. He has violated the laws of this Congress. … He has to go,” LaLota said.
Mayorkas concluded his letter to Greene on Tuesday with an emotional account of his work in public service, noting that his parents brought him to the United States from Cuba and instilled in him a “respect for law enforcement” that led him to lead DHS.
“I can assure you that your false accusations do not sway me or distract me from the law enforcement and broader mission of public service to which I have dedicated and remained committed most of my career,” he wrote.