A group of 133 House Republicans is accusing the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) of willfully disregarding the law and endangering American citizens by embracing open border policies.
The House representatives told Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas in an April 25 letter that his “actions have willingly endangered American citizens, undermined the rule of law, and our nation’s sovereignty.”
The lawmakers allege that the DHS head is not carrying out “in good faith” an April 2021 federal court order requiring continued execution of the Trump-era Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP, or the “Remain in Mexico” policy) after the department suspended enrollments in the program in January 2021.
The letter says that the DHS head issued a memorandum on June 1, 2021, attempting to end the MPP and directly contradicted the April 2021 federal court order.
After the Supreme Court declined the Biden administration’s attempt to reverse the court order in August 2021, Mayorkas issued another memorandum in October “laying out plans to terminate the program.” In their letter, the GOP lawmakers said that these memos are “attempts to unilaterally reverse policy” and show a “willful disregard for the law and the principles of separation of powers.”
“This callous disregard for the judiciary and willful refusal to properly apply the law raises questions about your commitment to protecting the homeland,” the lawmakers wrote to Mayorkas.
The lawmakers’ criticisms come amid the ongoing immigration crisis at the U.S. southern border and growing concerns that the Biden administration’s announcement to repeal Title 42 in May will aggravate the surge in illegal entries into the country.
“The historic crisis at our southern border is set to worsen greatly due to the announced rescission of Title 42, which will bring a tidal wave of illegal immigrants across our southern border and overwhelm the already overworked and understaffed agents of the U.S. Border Patrol,” the letter read.
According to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) website, Border Patrol agents documented 221,303 encounters with illegal immigrants attempting to cross the southwest border in March and 1,217,802 encounters year-to-date through March.
Yet Border Patrol agents are bracing for an even bigger influx of illegal immigrants after the Biden administration announced in April its plans to drop the Title 42 public health provision on May 23.
“They’re preparing for us to start apprehending over 500,000 a month,” a Border Patrol agent told The Epoch Times on April 4. “So really, what Border Patrol is now becoming is essentially just a greeter.”
“The well-resourced cartels, gang members, human traffickers, and drug smugglers will exploit this crisis to further endanger American citizens,” the lawmakers wrote.
They are demanding answers to several questions, including whether the law mandates detainment of illegal migrants, what authority the secretary has to release them, details on compliance with the Secure Fence Act of 2006, and costs the DHS has incurred by pausing construction of physical barriers along the southern border.
“Current law requires you to maintain operational control of the southern border and detain illegal aliens. You continue to fail to do so,” the lawmakers said.
During a Monday news conference in Eagle Pass, Texas, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy was asked about the letter and possibly impeaching Mayorkas over border issues. McCarthy responded, “if someone is derelict in their job, there is always the option of impeaching somebody. But right now, he’s got 30 days.”
The Epoch Times has reached out to Mayorkas’s office for comment.