The Senate leadership has yet to weigh in on when Mayorkas’ nomination will go to a floor vote. But it is widely expected to be confirmed.
Mayorkas is a Cuban-born lawyer and one of the main architects of the Deferred Action Program for Childhood Arrivals. He served as DHS Assistant Secretary under former President Barack Obama.
Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) And other Republicans used the committee meeting for the vote to reiterate their concerns over a 2015 DHS Inspector General Report who found Mayorkas showed “an appearance of favoritism and special access” for some visa recipients. Mayorkas disputed the findings of the report.
A group of eight Republican senators, led by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), on Tuesday urged new Judicial Committee chairman Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) To hold a hearing on the Mayorkas nomination – a move that would make drag its way to confirmation.
“All members of the Committee should have the opportunity to hear directly from Mr. Mayorkas and publicly discuss with him his plans with respect to the immigration components and functions of the Ministry,” the GOP senators wrote in a letter. .
GOP Meaning. Mitt Romney (Utah) and Rob Portman (Ohio) both voted to advance Mayorkas’ nomination.
Durbin told POLITICO he didn’t think it was necessary and was “another opportunity for [a] political swing by Senator Hawley. “
But he also told reporters: “I don’t want to rule anything out to get the job done, but I’ll tell you … If a man with his origins is detained, it’s totally political as far as I’m concerned.”
Mayorkas, if confirmed, will represent a major change in tone and direction for DHS, which was created after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Under Biden, the agency is also expected to focus more on cybersecurity and emergency response.
Mayorkas, who served as DHS deputy secretary under Jeh Johnson, would be the first immigrant and Latino to lead the department. He has already been confirmed by the Senate three times: as Deputy Secretary of DHS, Director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, and as United States Attorney for the Central District of California.
Marianne Levine contributed to this report.