House impeaches Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas over handling of illegal immigration

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testifies before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on October 31, 2023, in Washington, D.C. The committee heard testimony on the topic of 'Threats to the Homeland.'
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testifies before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on October 31, 2023, in Washington, D.C. The committee heard testimony on the topic of "Threats to the Homeland." | Win McNamee/Getty Images

The U.S. House of Representatives has impeached Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas amid disagreements with the administration's handling of the influx of illegal immigration at the southern border. 

The Republican-controlled House voted to impeach Mayorkas in a narrow 215-214 vote Tuesday. The party-line vote comes a week after the House failed to secure the votes necessary to impeach Mayorkas in a previous attempt.

As with the vote last week, all Democrats present in the chamber voted against impeaching Mayorkas while three Republicans broke from their party to join with Democrats in opposing the impeachment: Reps. Ken Buck, R-Colo., Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., and Tom McClintock, R-Calif.

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Introduced in November by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., the resolution calling for impeachment states that the secretary "repeatedly violated laws enacted by Congress regarding immigration and border society."

"In large part because of his unlawful conduct, millions of aliens have illegally entered the United States on an annual basis with many unlawfully remaining in the United States," the resolution states.

"His refusal to obey the law is not only an offense against the separation of powers in the Constitution of the United States, it also threatens our national security and has had a dire impact on communities across the country." 

The articles of impeachment cite multiple violations of the Immigration and Nationality Act as "high crimes and misdemeanors" that justify impeachment. Encounters between illegal immigrants and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials have reached record levels in the first three years of the Biden administration. 

The number of monthly encounters reached a record 301,983 in December 2023. A total of 961,537 illegal border crossings occurred in the first four months of fiscal year 2024, which began in October. That figure does not include those who have entered the country undetected by law enforcement. 

The White House condemned the impeachment as "baseless." In a statement Tuesday, President Joe Biden declared that "History will not look kindly on House Republicans for their blatant act of unconstitutional partisanship that has targeted an honorable public servant in order to play petty political games."

"From his time in the Justice Department as a U.S. Attorney to his service as Deputy Secretary and now Secretary of Homeland Security, he has upheld the rule of law faithfully and has demonstrated a deep commitment to the values that make our nation great," he added. "Instead of staging political stunts like this, Republicans with genuine concerns about the border should want Congress to deliver more border resources and stronger border security." 

Mayorkas' fate rests in the hands of the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate, where a two-thirds vote is required to remove him from office. In light of the political polarization surrounding Mayorkas' impeachment and the Democrats' 51-49 margin in the U.S. Senate, the removal of the Homeland Security Secretary is viewed as highly unlikely since it would require at least 18 Democrats to jump on board.

Some conservative commenters have pointed out that, at the very least, an impeachment vote will require Senate Democrats up for reelection in swing states or states that former President Donald Trump either carried or narrowly lost in the 2020 presidential election to offer an opinion on the matter through their votes. 

With Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, up for reelection, Trump won Buckeye State by more than 8 percentage points. Sen. Jon Tester of Montana is up for reelection, a state Trump won by more than 16 percentage points while losing Arizona (Sen. Kyrsten Sinema) and Wisconsin (Sen. Tammy Baldwin) by less than 1 percentage point. Trump came up short by less than 3 percentage points in Michigan and Nevada. 

Polls suggest that Biden could lose most or all of those six states in his reelection bid, where he is expected to face off against Trump. The RealClearPolitics average of polls measuring voter intentions in the hypothetical matchup shows Trump 4.5 points ahead in Arizona, 5.1 points ahead in Michigan, 7 points ahead in Nevada and 0.6 points ahead in Wisconsin. In Pennsylvania, Biden has a lead of 0.3 points. Montana and Ohio are expected to support Trump by a wider margin.

The RealClearPolitics average of polls measuring Biden's approval rating on immigration, based on surveys taken since Jan. 3, shows the president 30.8 points underwater on the issue. 

Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at:

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