Mayorkas impeachment: Here are the House Republicans managing his trial

Rep. Clay Higgins will lead Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ impeachment trial in the U.S.  

Higgins, chairman of the Border Security Subcommittee on the House Homeland Security Committee, will join 10 other impeachment managers in presenting their case to the Senate to try to oust the Biden administration official in charge of the U.S.-Mexico border.

The other impeachment managers are Andy Biggs (Arizona); Marjorie Taylor Greene (Georgia); Michael Guest (Mississippi); Mark Green (Tennessee); Mike McCaul (Texas); Andrew Garbarino (New York); August Pfluger (Texas); Ben Cline (Virginia); Harriet Hageman (Wyoming), and Laurel Lee (Florida).

Higgins and Greene have been among the most outspoken against Mayorkas. They’re expected to take center stage at the upcoming trial. 


House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border Security and Enforcement Chairman Clay Higgins (R-LA) (R) hears from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) during a hearing about the expiration of Title 42in the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hil

The GOP-led House on Tuesday voted to impeach Mayorkas with a simple majority after failing to impeach him on the first try a few days earlier. They're accusing him of violating federal law by not enforcing immigration policy amid a growing crisis at the border. 

It’s been 150 years since a Cabinet member was impeached by Congress. The last time it happened was to War Secretary William Belknap in 1876. 

Here’s what else to know about the impeachment and what comes next. 

Why was Mayorkas impeached? 

U.S. House Republicans say the secretary is violating immigration laws by not detaining enough migrants and by implementing a humanitarian parole program that they say bypasses Congress to allow people into the country who wouldn’t otherwise qualify to enter. And they allege that he’s lied to Congress when he has said things like the border is secure. All of this together, they argue, has created a prolonged crisis that is having repercussions across the country, is squarely the secretary’s fault and warrants impeachment. However, the three House Republicans who voted against impeachment argued that the charges didn't meet that bar.


US Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas speaks about security during a news conference ahead of Super Bowl LVIII at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada on February 7, 2024. (Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)

Democrats and many legal experts have said that this is essentially a policy dispute and that Republicans just don’t like the immigration policies that the Biden administration, via Mayorkas, has implemented. That’s an issue for voters to decide, not an issue that meets the level of "high crimes and misdemeanors" required to impeach a Cabinet official, they argue.

What does Mayorkas say about his impeachment?

Mayorkas, in an interview with The Associated Press, said he is "totally focused on the work" that his agency conducts and is not distracted by the politics of impeachment.

"Many of these individuals haven’t sat down and spoken with me about my approach to the work, my policy positions, what we’re trying to do, how we are scrupulously and quite aggressively enforcing the law," he said.

RELATED: Mexico's increase in immigration enforcement results in drop in illegal border crossings into US

"I do not lose a minute’s sleep over the impeachment," he continued. "I lose minutes of sleep, over the challenges that we have substantively, the challenges that we confront. And are we doing everything that we can to meet them? And am I supporting the workforce and its needs?" the secretary said.

What happens next with Mayorkas' impeachment? 

As laid out by the Constitution, the House votes to impeach and the Senate then holds a trial on the charge or charges. Two thirds of senators present can convict.

The House is expected to deliver the charges to the Senate on Feb. 28, and the trial could start as soon as the same day, according to The New York Times

With Democrats holding a 51-49 majority in the Senate, that means all Republicans and a substantial number of Democrats would have to vote to convict Mayorkas — a highly unlikely scenario. Democrats have been united in opposing the impeachment, and even some Republicans are cool to the idea. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.