Jordan says first border hearing will take place next week

by mcardinal

Willie R. Tubbs, FISM News

Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan and the House Judiciary Committee have set Feb. 1 as the date for the first of what figures to be many hearings about the crisis at the southern border and the future of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. 

Jordan announced the hearing Wednesday with a five-word tweet: “Ready to go to work.” 

The exact nature of the hearing, which Jordan has deemed “The Biden Border Crisis: Part 1,” remains unclear, but it’s a safe bet that Republicans will use this as the first step toward a potential impeachment of Mayorkas.

Among Republicans’ chief complaints about Mayorkas’ leadership has been a seeming inability to reign in migrant border crossings and startling amounts of fentanyl being smuggled into the country. 

“On Wednesday, Border Patrol in Nogales, Texas seized approximately 75,800 fentanyl pills. What aren’t they catching?” Jordan tweeted Friday. 

Although she will not likely factor into next week’s hearing, Nina Jankowitz, former head of the long-defunct Disinformation Governance Board, which fell under the purview of DHS, is also among the people Jordan has requested to participate in his committee’s investigations or face subpoenas. 

The disinformation board is remembered primarily for being a threat to the First Amendment, but part of its job was to have also been countering disinformation related to immigration. 

“You have been on notice about our oversight requests—and are aware that the requests are outstanding—for months,” Jordan wrote to Jankowicz. “For your convenience, we have attached the letters dated May 5, 2022, and December 1, 2022. Although your attorney has belatedly contacted the Committee, our requests are still outstanding. Accordingly, we reiterate our requests and ask that you comply promptly. The Committee is prepared to resort to compulsory process, if necessary, to obtain your testimony and this material.”

Last week, Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), chair of the House Oversight Committee, announced his intention to hold hearings about the border crisis and demanded Mayorkas produce records related to the same. 

“The American people and their elected representatives must know DHS’s role in the humanitarian and national security crisis along the U.S. southern border,” Comer wrote to Mayorkas last week. 

Friday, Comer penned another letter to Mayorkas, this time criticizing the secretary for refusing to allow four senior border officials to testify before Oversight. 

“DHS pays lip service to its own internal protocols in making this determination, and even argues that it is DHS’s prerogative—not Congress’s—to determine for congressional committees who would be an appropriate witness,” Comer wrote. “DHS’s internal protocols are not binding on Congress, and it is irrelevant whether DHS disagrees with the Committee’s determination that these four law enforcement professionals should testify at a Committee hearing.”

Comer has tentatively slated the Oversight hearing for the week of Feb. 6.