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The House impeaches Secretary of Homeland Security

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(Drew Angerer / Getty Images)

The United States Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, was successfully impeached by the House of Representatives on February 13. This is only the second time in the history of the United States that there has been an attempted impeachment of a secretary.

Mayorkas was impeached because his department is in charge of immigration and border security, which is a key election issue. The basis of the impeachment was that he allegedly lied to Congress when saying that the US-Mexico border is secure. The Biden Administration is arguing that the Republicans just don’t agree with the policies that have been put into effect over the past few years. 

Frank Bowman, University of Missouri law professor, testified during a committee hearing, “That one congressional party disapproves, even disapproves vigorously, of President Biden’s policies on immigration or other matters within the secretary’s purview does not make the secretary impeachable”

Border security has become a largely talked about policy because of the rising level of immigration into the United States. The US-Mexico border is not only being flooded with Mexicans trying to chase the American dream, but also people from Central and South America, China, Afghanistan, Mauritania. Many migrants are pulled to the major cities, such as Chicago, New York, Boston, and Denver, which has strained city resources 

The first attempt of impeachment was on February 6, which failed with a 214-216 vote. To impeach someone the House needs the majority of the votes to win, so with a few Republicans voting to not impeach, the motion did not pass. On February 13 they tried again and this time succeeded with the voting at 214-213. This happened because some House Representatives were not present when they voted, such as Steve Scalise. 

(Greg Nash)

Now that the House has successfully  impeached Mayorkas, the motion is moving to the Senate for the final decision. While the Senate is reviewing the case and voting, Mayorkas still officially has his job and is working as usual. It will be harder to officially impeach Mayorkas in the Senate because the Senate is 51-49 Democrat and two thirds of the votes are needed to convict. 

“This baseless impeachment will do nothing to secure the border Republicans have admitted as much,” Mississippi Rep. Bennie Thompson, the top Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee, said in a statement after the vote. “Instead of providing the Department of Homeland Security the resources it needs or working together towards a bipartisan solution, they have rejected any solution for the sole reason that they can have a political wedge issue in an election year.”

Border security has been an outdated and underfunded system for years that remains neglected. With this impeachment and the general election coming up, it should draw attention to the controversial issues of immigration, border security, and foreign aid. 

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About the Contributor
Baily Hacker, Assistant Editor
Baily Hacker is a Sophomore at Powhatan High School and is an assistant editor for the PHS Arrowhead. In Baily's free time she likes baking, drawing, and hanging out with her friends and cats. She lives with her mom, dad, four cats, and sixteen chickens. Baily believes the news is important because so many people rely on it to know what is happening in the world. Her dream college is JMU and she wants to travel the world.

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