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House Republicans hold impeachment hearing for Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas

By Jake Beardslee · January 10, 2024

In brief…

  • GOP claims Mayorkas derelict in duty with record crossings; Democrats say it's baseless political stunt
  • White House calls it distraction; some House Republicans skeptical; scholars say no impeachable offense
  • DHS plans aggressive pushback, says it wastes time amid border negotiations
The House Homeland Security Committee held its first impeachment hearing focused on DHS Secretary Mayorkas over the border crisis, with Republicans claiming dereliction of duty and Democrats calling it a political stunt.  U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/Wikimedia

The House Homeland Security Committee held its first impeachment hearing on Wednesday focused on Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas as Republicans push to impeach him over the border crisis.

Republicans criticized Mayorkas during the hearing for the record number of border crossings under his watch. Democrats argued the impeachment is politically motivated and baseless.

Chairman Mark Green said impeachment can target “gross incompetence” endangering Americans, not just criminal acts. He claimed Mayorkas “brazenly refused to enforce the laws” and made the country “less safe.”

Top Democrat Bennie Thompson called it a “pre-planned, pre-determined political stunt” that is “not legitimate.” Witness Frank Bowman said he’s seen no evidence Mayorkas committed “an impeachable offense.”

State attorneys general from Montana, Oklahoma and Missouri testified about problems impacting their states, with Montana’s Austin Knudsen saying Mayorkas “poured gasoline on this fire.”

The White House called the impeachment push a “distraction” from “critical priorities.” Some House Republicans have expressed skepticism. Conservative scholar Jonathan Turley wrote in an op-ed for The Daily Beast that Mayorkas hasn’t done anything “criminal or impeachable.”