Republican defections stop House impeachment of Mayorkas (Part-1)

Washington — House Republicans failed to impeach Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Tuesday, delaying a high-profile aim for now after a few GOP legislators opposed the party's proposal.

The surprising roll call failed to impeach Mayorkas by one vote, halting Republicans' efforts to penalize the Biden administration over border management. Republicans required virtually all of their tiny majority to pass the articles of impeachment since Democrats opposed the allegations.

The House floor was raucous when the vote was deadlocked 215-215 for several minutes. Republicans, headed by impeachment advocate Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, encircled Wisconsin Republican Mike Gallagher, who refused to modify his vote.

Frustrated,” said Homeland Security Committee chairman Rep. Mark Green, R-Tenn., “but we’ll see it back again.” Raj Shah, spokesperson for House Speaker Mike Johnson, said they “fully intend” to review Mayorkas' impeachment “when we have the votes for passage.”

But following actions are unknown. Three Republicans rejected impeachment, while a fourth changed his vote to reconsider. The final score was 214-216. The House Republicans' inability to use their majority position to achieve political goals or simply govern was another setback. Johnson, who could only afford a few defections, announced that he had personally called to Gallagher and another GOP holdout, noting the “heavy, heavy” vote and seeking their support.

“It’s an extreme measure,” said R-La Johnson. “But extreme times require extreme measures.” It is the first time a serving Cabinet secretary has been impeached since 1876, when Secretary of War William Belknap resigned before the vote.

Border security is a prominent political issue in the 2024 election, and Republicans, headed by Donald Trump, are attacking President Joe Biden particularly hard. Mayorkas faces impeachment proceedings.

Mayorkas considers it a global migration age, with record numbers of individuals coming at the southern border, many fleeing nations. Many migrants are claiming asylum and being conditionally released into the U.S., arriving in places that lack homes and other services while they await years of legal hearings to decide their status. The House Democrats opposed Mayorkas' two articles of impeachment, calling them a fake to appease Trump and not treason, bribery, or “high crimes and misdemeanors.