House Republicans Impeach Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas on Second Attempt; Senate Likely to Acquit

House Republicans impeached Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas in a Tuesday night vote after their first attempt failed last week.


House Republicans impeached Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas in a Tuesday night vote after their first attempt failed last week.

  • The impeachment resolution passed the House in a 214-213 vote, with three Republicans – Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-WI), Ken Buck (R-CO) and Tom McClintock (R-CA) – voting with all Democrats. 
  • House Republicans have accused Mayorkas of willfully failing to enforce immigration laws and exacerbating the migrant crisis that has overwhelmed the southern border. Mayorkas claims the allegations are false and insists that he stands by his record at DHS.
  • After the vote, President Joe Biden released a statement insisting 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.”
  • Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-LA) returned to the House this week after receiving treatment for blood cancer, providing Republicans the crucial vote they needed to seal the deal. 
  • Impeachment will move to the Senate, where it will almost certainly die. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced that senators would be sworn in as jurors for Mayorkas’s trial after Feb. 26, but the Democratic-controlled Senate is highly unlikely to convict a Democratic official.
  • Republicans’ slim majority in the House is set to get even narrower after the special election in New York’s 3rd Congressional District on Tuesday, when ex-Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY) handily won the race to replace expelled GOP Rep. George Santos. 
  • Mayorkas is the second Cabinet secretary to be impeached by the House, nearly 150 years after the impeachment of Secretary of War William Belknap in 1876. Belknap, who served in the administration of Ulysses Grant, was impeached over a corruption and bribery scandal.

reporting from the left side of the aisle


  • Axios published an exclusive look into “how Biden botched the border.” Axios used new reporting of a meeting where Biden yelled at his staff and demanded obscure data as a symbol of the problems that have characterized “the Biden administration’s struggle with the border crisis during the past three years — infighting, blame-shifting and indecision.”
  • The New York Times called the impeachment “a partisan indictment of President Biden’s immigration policies by the G.O.P., which is seeking to use a surge in migration across the U.S. border with Mexico during his tenure as a political weapon against him and Democrats in this year’s elections.”


  • Rep. Buck wrote an op-ed for National Review explaining his opposition to the impeachment of Mayorkas. Buck called the impeachment “a violation of the Constitution” because “the standard for impeachment is not a failed policy — no matter how reckless or unpopular it may be. The standard for impeachment, which the Constitution lays out in clear language, is ‘treason, bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.’ Maladministration, incompetence, and a blatant disregard for the American people’s wishes are notably absent from the list.”
  • “Republicans continued the impeachment effort after rejecting an effort in the Senate to craft a bipartisan border deal to address many of the same issues House conservatives are raising,” The Wall Street Journal observed. “House Speaker Mike Johnson (R., La.) called the Senate’s deal—which paired aid for Ukraine with changes to border policy—dead on arrival, eventually leading most Republicans in the House and Senate to criticize the bill as insufficient.”
  • Breitbart noted the impeachment allows Republicans to “claim they secured a rare opportunity in a bitterly divided Congress to hold the Biden administration accountable on what could be the election-defining issue of 2024.”

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© Dominic Moore, 2023