Graham, Cruz threaten Mayorkas with impeachment for ‘gross dereliction of duty’ to secure the border

This week, Republican Sens. Lindsey Graham and Ted Cruz sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas threatening him with impeachment unless he resolves his department’s “gross dereliction of duty” vis-a-vis the southern border.

“Your failure to faithfully enforce this nation’s immigration laws and willful blindness to the very real humanitarian crisis at our southern border amounts to a gross dereliction of duty and a violation of your oath of office. Historically high levels of illegal immigration and illicit drug trafficking demonstrate that our southern border is open for every kind of public health and national security threat imaginable,” the pair wrote in their fiery letter.

“Despite the heroic efforts by the men and women of Border Patrol, who operate with very little support from Washington, D.C., you have failed to achieve any semblance of operational control of the southern border. We have grave concerns about what this failure means for both national security and the health and safety of American citizens. These failures cannot go unaddressed, and your actions cannot be unaccounted for. The American people deserve better.”

As proof that Mayorkas has been “derelict in [his] duties,” the senators cited data from his own department.

“Since you assumed office as the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) 19 months ago, there have been over 4.4 million illegal crossings, including over 3.5 million apprehensions by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and at least 900,000 gotaways, who evaded apprehension,” they wrote.

The senators further blamed these numbers on the policies of both the DHS and the Biden administration at large.

“These astronomically high numbers are due in no small part to the political decision to rescind a number of President Trump’s policies that were stemming the flow of illegal aliens and illicit drugs across the southern border,” they wrote.

“Withdrawing the Remain in Mexico policy, ending Title 42 expulsions, terminating border wall construction contracts, and countless other decisions, coupled with your own lax border policies, act as ‘pull’ factors that have encouraged millions of aliens to undertake the dangerous journey to the U.S.-Mexico border.”

The pair continued their letter by contrasting the number of reported border crossings that occurred under former President Donald Trump with the number of crossings that have occurred under President Joe Biden.

They pointed, for instance, to a 930 percent increase in illegal alien encounters from May 2020 to May 2022.

“This deluge of illegal immigration shows no signs of stopping, or even slowing down. Border Patrol agents are currently logging 8,000 illegal alien encounters every day. These numbers are stretching the Border Patrol to its operational limits, with many agents being pulled from enforcement duties in order to provide caretaking to the ever-growing stream of aliens,” the senators wrote.

They also warned about the consequences of both fentanyl and terrorists being trafficked/smuggled across the border.

“Further, our open southern border inflicts incredible harm on American citizens by worsening the opioid epidemic ravaging the United States. Fentanyl, which has become the leading cause of death of Americans ages 18 to 45,5 is streaming across our southern border,” according to Graham and Cruz.

“The chaos at the southern border also presents a prime opportunity for terrorists to enter the United States undetected. Border Patrol has apprehended at least 78 individuals on the Terrorist Screening Database between ports of entry thus far in fiscal year 2022.11 That is more than twice as many apprehended in the past five fiscal years combined.”

Continuing their letter, the senators also spoke about the humanitarian crisis being faced by illegal aliens, the morale crisis being faced by Border Patrol agents, and the border crisis being blatantly ignored by this administration.

“Members of Congress in both the Senate and the House have sent countless letters to DHS trying to understand why this crisis has gone on unaddressed for over a year-and-a-half. However, it is clear from recent public statements that neither you nor the Biden administration in which you serve truly understand the scope of this crisis or even acknowledge its existence,” they wrote.

Indeed, to hear this administration tell it, the border is perfectly fine and secure.

“Look, the border is secure,” Mayorkas himself said during a forum this past summer.

Listen:

But the border is not secure. Not even remotely. The data proves it, as do all the videos showing illegal aliens streaming across the border undeterred.

The senators concluded their letter by dropping the hammer of potential impeachment.

“This is gross dereliction of duty and, if not corrected swiftly, could provide grounds for impeachment. We fully expect that in a few months’ time a Republican-led Congress will hold you to account for your willful negligence regarding the security of the southern border and the safety of the American people,” they wrote.

“We ask that you provide a full accounting of what DHS will do to achieve operational control of the southern border, as it is required to do by law, and stop the flow of illegal aliens and illicit drugs into the United States. Lives are depending on it.”

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Vivek Saxena

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