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Biden's DHS Secretary is again facing calls for his impeachment

By Sarah May on
 April 19, 2023

Calls for the impeachment of Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas gained steam this week, as he faced a tough grilling from several members of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, as the Daily Mail reports.

Mayorkas faced particular scrutiny on Tuesday during a hearing in which multiple lawmakers asked at the very least for his resignation, with another vowing to initiate a no confidence vote in the Cabinet-level official.

Combative hearing

During the proceedings, Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KY) lambasted Mayorkas' performance of late, declaring him “derelict in his duties,” and indicating his intention of drafting a resolution calling for a “no confidence” vote in the secretary.

Referencing prior rumbling about the possible impeachment of Mayorkas, Marshall said, “I stand at the ready to receive articles of impeachment from the House and conduct and impeachment trial in this body.”

Marshall continued, “But in the meantime, I think the Senate must show our colleagues in the House that we've had enough of the failures from the Department of Homeland Security and believe that the secretary is not fit to faithfully carry out the duties of his office.”

When, during the hearing, Mayorkas requested an opportunity to respond to the criticisms leveled by Republicans, Marshall responded in exasperation, “I want you to answer my questions, not give me lectures.”

Johnson takes aim

Adding to Mayorkas' burden at the hearing was Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), who pointed out the sheer numbers of border crossings that have occurred on Mayorkas' watch, putting the number somewhere between 4 and 5 million, as the Mail further noted.

In response, Mayorkas insisted that he was “very, very focused on the security of our border, an assertion Johnson found questionable.

“No, you're not. No you're not,” the senator declared, adding, “I don't want to listen to that,” and asking Mayorkas about the numbers of girls who have been subjected to sex trafficking at the southern border.

When Mayorkas declared that the issue was indeed a priority for his department, Johnson replied, “But you are failing miserably.” He continued, “You're not giving me any stats whatsoever in terms of the number of people that are human trafficked, how many young girls are sex trafficked. You don't have a clue. You won't even answer how many dead bodies, which is very well documented, at the border.”

Cornyn concurs

Tuesday's fireworks were not dissimilar to the tensions that arose at a March hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee in which Mayorkas also faced intense questioning from, among others, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), as the Washington Examiner noted at the time.

On the topic of fentanyl coming across the border and contributing to an overdose epidemic in the United States, Mayorkas claimed that more than 90% of fentanyl making its way into the U.S. is seized at known ports of entry.

Cornyn responded incredulously, saying, “That's a totally made up number. You had over a million people evade Border Patrol detection and detention between 2022 and 2023. You have no idea how many of those people were carrying fentanyl or other drugs with them, do you?”

After Mayorkas claimed he was relying on an “expert view” he was provided, Cornyn asked the secretary if he knew he had “a credibility problem with Congress and the American people” and eventually said he should be fired.

Impeachment calls mount

As the Washington Examiner noted separately, the latest official to add their voice to the chorus of those calling for Mayorkas' impeachment is Republican Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody, who recently made her feelings known in a letter to Congress.

Moody cited a recent federal court ruling on the Biden administration's catch-and-release border policy in support of her contention that Mayorkas has lied under oath to congressional committees regarding the security situation at the border and is engaging in conduct that actively endangers the lives of Americans.

If Mayorkas “is unwilling to do the patriotic thing and resign his position, then Congress must initiate impeachment proceedings to get rid of this threat to our national security,” Moody stated.

Given that Republican Reps. Pat Fallon (TX-04) and Andy Biggs (AZ-05) have filed articles of impeachment against Mayorkas already, it could be that the secretary sees the writing on the wall, and that is why, as Politico reported earlier this year, DHS has contracted with high-powered law firm Deveboise & Plimpton for representation of both the agency and Mayorkas in possible future proceedings to that effect.