Republicans in the House of Representatives presented two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Sunday, promising to act quickly in their attempt to remove him from office after holding him responsible for the complex situation in immigration at the border between the United States and Mexico. .
Republicans attacked the border and immigration policies of Democratic President Joe Biden after the number of illegal crossings on the southern border of the country increased, focusing their criticism on the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Republicans hold him responsible for “high crimes and misdemeanors” amounting to a “deliberate and systematic refusal to obey the law” on immigration and a “violation of the public trust.” Impeachment, they say, is “the only viable option for Congress.”
“Alejandro N. Mayorkas willfully and systematically refused to comply with immigration laws, failed to control the border to the detriment of national security, compromised public safety, and violated the rule of law and the separation of powers established in the Constitution in the damning manifesto of the people of the United States,” reads the impeachment resolution.
Democrats and the agency called the move a politically motivated stunt with no constitutional basis to remove him from office.
All this happened at a time when border security and immigration were key issues in the 2024 political campaigns and when Donald Trump, the favorite to win the Republican presidential nomination, promised to launch the “biggest operation of deportation” in the country’s history if he returned to the White House.
The Republicans’ accusations against Mayorkas
The committee specifically criticized the implementation of family reunification parole programs that allow some foreign citizens to wait in the United States to obtain immigration visas, calling the measures illegal.
The first article of the indictment states that Mayorkas must first arrest people who cross the border illegally.
In a second article, Republican lawmakers said Mayorkas made false statements to Congress about border security and an obstructed administration.
Committee Chairman Mark Green, R-Tenn., said in a statement that “these articles present a clear, compelling, and irrefutable case for the removal of Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.” “Congress has a duty to ensure that the executive branch implements and enforces the laws we pass. However, Secretary Mayorkas has repeatedly refused to do so,” Green stated.
DHS’s response to the possibility of impeachment
The Department of Homeland Security responded on Sunday with a memo in which it said that Republicans “undermined efforts to reach bipartisan solutions and ignored facts, juries, experts, and even the Constitution itself in their eagerness to baseless impeachment of Secretary Mayorkas.”.
The agency explained that under the Immigration and Nationality Act, the department follows “mandatory detention requirements to the greatest extent possible,” but the “rule requiring 100% detention means that Congress “must impeach every DHS secretary since the department was built.”
What’s next in the process?
The National Security Committee of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives plans to vote on articles of impeachment on Tuesday. They will be sent to the plenary session of that body, where its president, Republican Mike Johnson, said that they will be considered quickly.
The articles require a simple majority to be approved by the House of Representatives. The Senate will then hold the impeachment trial. Two-thirds in favor of removing Mayorkas are required, something that seems impossible because the Senate is controlled by the Democrats.
Mexican authorities have ordered “immigrants to pass through” the US; some have criticized