Mayorkas’ Impeachment Articles Are Forwarded To The Senate By The House

A Senate trial is set to begin as an outcome of the House Republicans’ decision to bring attention to President Joe Biden’s management of immigration policy. The members have forwarded two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

Mayorkas' Impeachment Articles Are Forwarded To The Senate By The House

But the swift dismissal of the charges without a trial or a swift trial that results in no conviction is anticipated from the Democratic-controlled Senate.

Mayorkas became the first Cabinet secretary to be impeached in almost 150 years when he assumed the position at the beginning of the Biden administration. After failing to impeach Mayorkas on their first attempt, House Republicans narrowly voted in favour of doing so in February due to his handling of the southern border.

As soon as the Republicans took over the House last year, they began to attack Mayorkas, accusing the Homeland Security secretary of being responsible for the high number of border crossings. This was done in response to pressure from the party’s grassroots to hold the Biden administration responsible on a crucial campaign topic.

However, several constitutional experts have stated that the evidence presented by Republicans falls short of the high standard of serious crimes and misdemeanours established by the US Constitution. Democrats have maintained that there is no merit to the impeachment process and that it is motivated only by politics.

Now that the matter has moved to the Senate, Democratic senators and a few Republican senators have expressed their expectation that the chamber will move to dismiss the case before a full trial.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer stated on Tuesday night that senators will be sworn in as jurors in the case at 1 p.m. on Wednesday if it is not dismissed outright.

Many Republicans are becoming even less optimistic about the chances of impeaching Biden, who is arguably their top target for investigation this Congress, as a result of the turbulent manner the impeachment process against Mayorkas has unfolded. That separate impeachment investigation has stalled because House Republicans lack the votes and hard evidence necessary to remove Biden from office given their slender majority.

DHS has referred to Mayorkas’ attempted impeachment as a political stunt and Mayorkas has responded angrily to criticism of his leadership.

“Despite warnings from fellow Republicans that this baseless impeachment effort ‘distorts the Constitution,’ House Republicans continue to ignore the facts and undermine the Constitution by wasting even more time on this sham impeachment in the Senate,” a DHS spokesperson said in a statement.

In an attempt to criticize Biden and his administration’s handling of the southern border, Republicans have aimed at Mayorkas. Immigration has been a political vulnerability for Biden, with border crossings hitting record highs and US towns all around the nation finding it difficult to handle the flood of migrants.

However, the administration is attempting to change the narrative by pointing to Republicans’ obstruction of a bipartisan border agreement as proof that they don’t take border security seriously.

A significant bipartisan border compromise that would have brought significant changes to immigration law and given the president broad authority to limit illegal migrant crossings at the southern border was thwarted by Senate Republicans earlier this year, following months of negotiations. The act sought to close gaps in the asylum procedure, restrict the use of parole for immigrants, and allow the president further power to effectively close the border to migrants when the number of attempts to pass exceeded a certain threshold.

Former President Donald Trump and Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson, who represents Louisiana, attacked the agreement nonstop, claiming that it would fail in his chamber if it ever made it out of the Senate. On Truth Social, Trump—who has made immigration a central tenet of his presidential campaign—said Republicans would “look bad” if more resources were approved for the border.

White House counsel’s office spokesman Ian Sams wrote in a memo that the Mayorkas impeachment process was “a complete waste of time that constitutional and legal experts have said is ‘unconstitutional’ and that even Senate Republicans have made clear they don’t want to focus on.”

“But the worst part is that extreme Republicans have promoted this silly, baseless stunt at the same time they have killed an actual bipartisan border security bill that would have addressed the challenges at the border and delivered needed resources to DHS,” he continued.

GOP’s Calls for Impeachment and Constitutional Experts’ Opposition

Johnson explained to Schumer why he thought a Mayorkas impeachment was appropriate when he first told him he would be presenting the impeachment articles to the Senate. Johnson stated that the administration’s use of parole authority was illegal and that Mayorkas gave department staff orders to break US immigration rules.

Mark Green, the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee and the person who oversaw the House inquiry into Mayorkas, claimed the secretary had committed serious crimes and misdemeanours that qualified as impeachable charges.

“These articles lay out a clear, compelling, and irrefutable case for Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ impeachment,” Green said in a statement provided to CNN. “He has willfully and systemically refused to comply with immigration laws enacted by Congress. He has breached the public trust by knowingly making false statements to Congress and the American people, and obstructing congressional oversight of his department.”

Additionally, he has quoted Justice Samuel Alito of the Supreme Court, claiming that in light of the court’s decision that states may not challenge federal immigration law, Congress might “employ the weapons of inter-branch warfare,” including impeachment.

Democrats have attacked the impeachment attempt, arguing that policy differences do not justify the infrequently utilized constitutional process of impeaching a Cabinet member.

The legal justifications offered by Republicans for their attempt to impeach the president have also been refuted by legal experts.

House Republicans have not produced any proof of crimes that could result in impeachment, according to Ross Garber, a law professor at Tulane University who has defended numerous Republican officials in impeachment proceedings as both the prosecution and the defense.

“I think that what the House Republicans are asserting is that Secretary Mayorkas is guilty of maladministration,” Garber said. “At least as framed right now, the charges don’t rise to the level of a high crime or misdemeanour.”

“As a former federal judge, U.S. attorney, and assistant attorney general — I can say with confidence that, for all the investigating that the House Committee on Homeland Security has done, they have failed to put forth evidence that meets the bar,” stated former DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff, who worked under Republican President George W. Bush, in an opinion piece.

Republicans have invited constitutional law scholar Jonathan Turley to testify in hearings, and he stated: “There is no evidence that he is corrupt or has committed an impeachable offence.” In an open letter, over two dozen legal professors stated that Mayorkas’ impeachment would be “utterly unjustified as a matter of constitutional law.”

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