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House Speaker Mike Johnson, a Republican from Louisiana, has sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from New York, stating that the House will be sending articles of impeachment against Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to the Senate when it returns to session in April. This move sets the stage for an impeachment trial to be held in the Senate. Johnson urged Schumer to schedule the trial promptly once the articles are received.

The impeachment trial in the Senate will involve the consideration of evidence, witness testimony, and a final vote to either acquit or convict Mayorkas on the charges brought against him. The Senate will determine a time for the House managers to present the articles of impeachment after they are transferred, with recent trials indicating that this typically occurs within days of the articles being received. The House had previously voted to impeach Mayorkas for high crimes and misdemeanors, with a resolution blaming him for failing to maintain operational control of the border and failing to detain all undocumented immigrants awaiting removal proceedings.

While the House has acted to impeach Mayorkas, it is unlikely that the Democrat-controlled Senate will vote to convict him, as a two-thirds majority vote is required for a conviction. The Senate currently consists of 48 Democrats, 49 Republicans, and three independent members who caucus with the Democrats, giving the Democrats a majority. In order to convict Mayorkas, all Republicans and a significant number of Democrats would need to vote in favor of conviction, which is seen as unlikely.

Impeachment managers, tasked with presenting the case for impeachment to the Senate, have been named by House Speaker Johnson. The managers include several Republican representatives, such as Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mark Green, Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. These managers will be responsible for making the argument for Mayorkas’ impeachment to the Senate during the trial. The letter sent by Johnson to Schumer emphasized the evidence against Mayorkas as being clear, comprehensive, and compelling.

Mayorkas has faced criticism from Republicans for his handling of the southern border, with accusations of systemic refusal to comply with the law and breach of public trust. The resolution against Mayorkas alleges that he has failed to comply with immigration laws passed by Congress. However, Mayorkas and the Department of Homeland Security have defended his record, stating that the issues at the border are not new and that every past secretary could have faced impeachment under the same standards. The House’s first attempt to impeach Mayorkas failed, but a successful impeachment vote occurred later, with Mayorkas becoming the first sitting Cabinet official in American history to be impeached.

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