House Democrats are decrying the U.S. House Homeland Security Committee’s plan to impeach Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. At the same time, Democrats nationwide have said the border isn’t secure and current policies are unsustainable.
After committee chairman U.S. Rep. Mark Green, R-Tenn., announced he was filing impeachment charges against Mayorkas, committee Ranking Member Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Mississippi, said doing so was a sham “to score political points.”
In response, on Monday, Green said Democratic criticism was an attempt “to distract members of the press and the public” from Mayorkas’ refusal to follow laws passed by Congress.
Green is filing articles of impeachment on Tuesday. House Democrats “cannot deny the central charges” in them, Green said.
“The facts are clear – Americans are suffering from the worst border crisis in our history. And increasingly, Democrats across the country are growing tired of it. Perhaps House Democrats should start listening to their own party’s concerns instead of attempting to keep distracting from what everyone realizes is a catastrophic failure at our borders.”
In the U.S. Senate, Sen. John Fetterman, D-Penn., said, “There is a crisis. We have a crisis at our border, and it can’t be controversial that we should have a secure border.” He also cited CBP data of more than 370,000 illegal border crossers in December, saying, “That’s larger than the population of Pittsburgh … That’s [Pennsylvania’s] second largest city – and that’s one month.”
The Center Square first reported on monthly illegal border crossing data compared to populations of individual U.S. states, counties and countries. In July 2022, illegal border crossing totals were greater than the population of 23 states. Today, they total over 40.
U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Arizona, has said, “The cartels are incredibly well-resourced and they’re very strategic, so they’re pushing people through different parts of the border at different times with different prices for different purposes, and they’re controlling what’s happening on the southern border, not the United States government.”
In the House, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat from Laredo, Texas, has said several times that there is a border crisis. In one interview, he said, “Obviously the border is not secure and I’ve been saying this for many years.” In another, he said, “You’ve got to have a policy where you actually return people back. You’ve got to do that. Otherwise, people are going to keep coming. If you don’t detain people, if you don’t send people back, then the border becomes a speedbump.”
This is after in July 2021, he called on President Joe Biden to “pause” releasing illegal foreign nationals into the country.
Another Democrat from the Texas border, U.S. Rep. Vincente Gonzalez, said, “We need to raise the credible fear standard at the border, and we need to have expedited hearings, and we need to have expedited removals, and we need to enforce American immigration laws in a humane way … But we do need to enforce American immigration laws at the border. Simply said, we need to enforce our laws. We need to scrutinize asylum-seekers further.”
Democratic mayors have said their cities are at a “breaking point” after receiving a fraction of the people Texas has – with Texas receiving over 1.9 million in fiscal 2023 alone, The Center Square exclusively reported.
Earlier this month, Denver Mayor Mike Johnston said, “We’re hitting a breaking point … we cannot support this volume [of migrants].” Denver has become a destination of choice of illegal border crossers arriving in El Paso, Texas. El Paso officials were among the first to bus foreign nationals to New York, Chicago and Denver, The Center Square has previously reported. Its mayor issued multiple emergency declarations, citing the border crisis, saying the city could not operate without federal funds.
In the border town of Eagle Pass, Texas, where the city has issued multiple emergency declarations, its mayor, Rolando Salinas, says Biden has abandoned border communities. “It is disappointing to see all these people coming in without a consequence … it is very disheartening to see this happening … Whoever says there is not a crisis going on … that is 100% not true,” he said last fall during a surge. The president “100 percent … bears some responsibility for this crisis. I haven’t heard from anybody in the administration. The president hasn’t put out a statement, the vice president, I haven’t heard from anybody. We’re here abandoned. We’re on the border, we’re asking for help. This is unacceptable.”
New York City Mayor Eric Adams, who has repeatedly blamed Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, said last month the city had “reached a breaking point,” “cannot continue to do the federal government’s job” and the federal government “must take responsibility and lead on this humanitarian crisis instead of leaving it for cities and localities to handle.” He also said, “Never in my life have I had a problem that I did not see an ending to. I don’t see an ending to this. … This issue will destroy New York City.”
Democratic Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson, who also blames Abbott and has pleaded for federal funds, said, “Without real, significant investment from our federal government, it won’t just be the city of Chicago that won’t be able to maintain this mission. It’s the entire country that is now at stake.”
Democratic governors have also pleaded for federal funds with New York Gov. Kathy Hochul saying, “This crisis originated with the federal government and must be resolved by the federal government.”