House Republicans will move forward with moves to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for his handling of the border crisisa Republican source tells CNN.
In a statement provided to CNN, a committee spokesperson said that “the House Homeland Security Committee has conducted a thorough investigation into Secretary Mayorkas’ handling and role in the unprecedented crisis at the southwest border.” for almost a year.
“Following the bipartisan vote in the House to refer the articles of impeachment against the Secretary to our Committee, we will hold hearings and address those articles in the coming weeks,” the statement said.
The impeachment announcement comes as immigration emerges as a major issue in the 2024 presidential election, with Republicans criticizing President Joe Biden’s immigration policies. On Wednesday, House Speaker Mike Johnson, along with some of his Republican colleagues, will visit one of the busiest sections of the U.S.-Mexico border, where just days ago border authorities struggled with a new wave of immigrants.
It is part of a long-running dispute between Republicans and the Biden administration over the handling of the southern border that culminated in impeachment proceedings against the DHS chief in charge of border security.
The committee spokesperson told CNN that the hearing will begin next week. “The Committee will ensure that the public is aware of the extent of Secretary Mayorkas’ egregious misconduct and refusal to enforce the law, but also that this process is completed promptly and accountability is achieved quickly, as the American people have demanded,” the statement said. saying.
The Department of Homeland Security responded in a statement Wednesday, arguing that House Republicans are “conducting a baseless political exercise that has been rejected by members of both parties and has already failed in a bipartisan vote.”
“There is no valid basis to impeach Secretary Mayorkas, as senior members of the House majority have attested, and this extreme impeachment push is a harmful distraction from our critical national security priorities,” the House spokeswoman said. DHS, Mia Ehrenberg.
“Secretary Mayorkas and the Department of Homeland Security will continue to work every day to keep Americans safe.”
Mayorkas attempted to downplay concerns about impeachment on Wednesday but strongly advocated for border security funding, warning that his department does not have the resources “to do our job as fully and completely as we can.”
Despite hitting an all-time high in border crossings in December, senior administration officials on Tuesday underscored the progress, citing a drop in crossings in recent days, but warned that migration ebbs and flows.
The timing, however, underscores how difficult it will be for any border deal to pass the House. Mayorkas has been a key player in the Senate’s bipartisan talks.
“We need additional personnel to improve our border security. We need technology to advance our fight against fentanyl. We need additional asylum officers to really speed up the asylum adjudication process,” she said during an appearance on “CNN This Morning,” pointing to a backlog of 3 million immigration court cases.
When asked by CNN’s Phil Mattingly whether an impeachment attempt would complicate any attempt to pass a border deal, Mayorkas said, “I certainly hope not.”
The latest development comes after the House voted in november refer a resolution to impeach Mayorkas to the Homeland Security Committee in a 209-201 vote, with eight Republicans voting with Democrats.
Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia introduced a privileged resolution to impeach Mayorkas in November, forcing Republican leaders to schedule action on the measure.
Since regaining the House majority, Republicans have long tried to impeach Mayorkas over his handling of the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. border with Mexico. Greene’s move came as Republicans have been pushing for stronger border security provisions in any supplemental aid package.
This story has been updated with additional information.
CNN’s Manu Raju and Michael Williams contributed to this report.