Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) questioned Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas this week regarding the Disinformation Governance Council records after the secretary claimed he did not know if the department had records relating to the advice.
Mayorkas claimed not to know the full background of hard-left Nina Jankowicz, who was chosen to lead the effort.
“I will not discuss the inner workings of the hiring process,” Mayorkas said before Hawley asked about the board documents.
“Communications about who would sit on the board. Do you want to communicate them to this committee? Hawley asked, prompting Mayorkas to swerve, suggesting there were no documents yet.
“There aren’t any” – he began before Hawley chimed in.
“There are no minutes of meetings regarding this council. … You didn’t create any records,” he insisted.
Mayorkas claimed that the council had not yet begun work, as Hawley pointed out that they had already hired Jankowicz.
“You’re telling me there’s no documentation associated with this painting,” Hawley said, as Mayorkas replied, “I don’t know.”
Hawley insisted, asking for minutes of meetings and records of communications about who would sit on the board.
“Do you want to turn them over to this committee?” Hawley asked, as Mayorkas said he would hand over the documents “unless there is a legal basis for us not to” — a problematic response, according to the senator.
WATCH: Mayorkas tells @HawleyMO he doesn’t know if DHS has any records on the Disinformation Governance Council because “the council hasn’t met yet.” But Nina Jankowicz herself says she has been working on board for “the last two months”. Do what? pic.twitter.com/Hnshqnk6JZ
— Philip Letsou (@philipletsou) May 4, 2022
Hawley also confronted Mayorkas, asking him why he doesn’t “just disband this council”.
“I mean, you haven’t heard a single senator support this advice,” Hawley said. “It’s an abomination, it’s unconstitutional, and frankly it’s embarrassing. And the fact that you chose this person to lead it is appalling.
The Missouri senator this week introduced a bill to disband the Biden administration’s Disinformation Governance Council, deeming it “nothing less than a censorship committee vested with full federal government powers to oversee dissenting speeches and opposing viewpoints under the guise of national security”. ”