The US House of Representatives, led by the Republican majority, is preparing to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
Mayorkas faces impeachment for his handling of immigration policy and the situation at the US-Mexico border following record-high border crossings in December.
House Republicans assert that Mayorkas has demonstrated "egregious misconduct and refusal to enforce the law," particularly concerning immigration and border security.
They point to the surge in US-Mexico border crossings, which reached a new monthly high in December, as a key factor in their decision.
The House Homeland Security Committee has been investigating Mayorkas's role in what they describe as an "unprecedented crisis" at the southern border.
In November, an attempt to impeach Mayorkas was halted in a House vote, where 8 Republicans sided with Democrats to block the resolution.
Amid these developments, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas expressed his willingness to cooperate with the impeachment proceedings. Speaking to NBC, he said he would "most certainly" participate in the process.
Immigration has become a central issue for Republicans in discussions on federal funding and aid to Ukraine, illustrating the broader political ramifications of this situation.
House Republicans view the impeachment proceedings as a way to highlight Mayorkas's alleged misconduct to the public.
Alejandro Mayorkas, defending his department, argues that it lacks sufficient resources for effective border security and efficient asylum processing. He highlighted the need for more personnel, technology, and asylum officers to address these challenges.
A spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security countered the impeachment efforts, stating there is no valid basis for impeaching Secretary Mayorkas. The spokesperson emphasized the harmful distraction this creates from national security priorities.
Andrew Bates, White House deputy press secretary, criticized the House Republicans for voting to reduce the number of border patrol agents and for leaving Washington in mid-December 2023 while bipartisan efforts continued in the Senate.
House Speaker Mike Johnson, leading a Republican delegation, was set to visit the southern border on January 4, 2024, underscoring the party's focus on border security issues.
Key events leading to this impeachment push include the record-breaking border crossings in December and the initial impeachment resolution against Mayorkas in November, which was blocked.
The first impeachment hearing against Mayorkas is scheduled for January 10, 2024, marking a significant escalation in the ongoing political conflict over immigration policy.
Following the bipartisan vote in the House to refer articles of impeachment against the secretary to our committee, we will be conducting hearings and taking up those articles in the coming weeks.
The concluding phase of this complex political saga is set to unfold with the scheduled impeachment hearings. Both sides of the political spectrum are bracing for a contentious debate over immigration policy, border security, and the role of the Homeland Security Secretary.