House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) called on Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to resign over his handling of the U. S.-Mexico border, saying that GOP lawmakers will consider impeachment next year if he does not step down.
“If Secretary Mayorkas does not resign, House Republicans will investigate, every order, every action and every failure will determine whether we can begin impeachment inquiry,” McCarthy said at a press conference in El Paso, Texas, on Tuesday.
McCarthy cited the Department of Homeland Security head’s statements to Congress that the border is under control, record border crossing numbers and his ending of the “Remain in Mexico” asylum policy instituted during the Trump administration as reasons for resignation.
“Our country may never recover from Secretary Mayorkas’s dereliction of duty,” McCarthy said.
The comments from the minority leader are his strongest words on impeachment to date, but they fall short of a promise to bring up articles against Mayorkas.
McCarthy was nominated by House Republicans to serve as Speaker in the next Congress last week during a closed-door vote.
But he still faces opposition from hard-line conservatives, who called on him to be more aggressive on topics including the impeachment of Biden administration officials and President Biden himself.
Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), the former chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, mounted a last-minute protest challenge to McCarthy for Speaker, citing the minority leader’s lack of commitment to impeach Mayorkas. Biggs has previously introduced articles of impeachment against the administration official. He won 31 votes in the secret-ballot House Republican Conference meeting, while McCarthy received 188.
McCarthy needs support from a majority of those voting for a Speaker candidate on the House floor on Jan. 3 in order to be elected to the post.
But Republicans won a narrow majority in the 2022 midterms, and McCarthy has little wiggle room for error on that vote. A few Republicans, including Biggs, have indicated that they will not vote for him.
The press conference with other House GOP members came after a day of touring the U. S.-Mexico border and meeting with border officials.
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Submitted 12 days ago