Mayorkas says Mike Johnson ‘mistaken’ in attack on border order

Speaker Mike Johnson’s (R-La.) remarks during a Wednesday television appearance regarding President Biden’s executive order limiting asylum at the southern border were “mistaken,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a Friday interview.

Mayorkas was reacting to Johnson’s comments during an interview with Fox News host Neil Cavuto in which Johnson told Cavuto that Biden could solve the border crisis and close the southern border entirely if he actually wanted to.

“If he really wanted to solve the border, Neil, he could close the border entirely. But this half-measure executive order he just did actually exacerbates the problem. He’s allowing thousands of people over the border every day before they just begin to enforce existing federal immigration law,” Johnson said, referencing Biden.

“I think it’s mistaken,” Mayorkas later told CNN, responding to Johnson’s quote. “I wish the Speaker would actually promote and pass the Senate’s bipartisan legislation that would be the toughest enforcement measures in more than 30 years.”

“Action speaks louder than words,” Mayorkas said, “and the words are mistaken.”

Johnson also said in the Wednesday interview that Mayorkas “has a serious problem with the truth,” which was why, the Speaker argued, he needed to be impeached.

“What I say, is this is exactly why we had to impeach Secretary Mayorkas — he has a serious problem with the truth. What he’s saying is comical,” Johnson told Cavuto.

Johnson disputed Mayorkas’s comments that Congress failed to act on border security, forcing the Biden administration’s hand.

“We expected Congress to act. They did not act once, they recently failed to act twice, and we took this executive action. It’s not too little and it’s not too late, we had hoped that Congress would act, they have failed to do so, and the president exercised his executive authority, as he has done now,” Mayorkas had told Cavuto in an earlier interview.

“He just said that the Republicans didn’t act? We passed H.R. 2 — the most secure border measure in the history of Congress — 14 months ago. It is still sitting on [Senate Majority Leader] Chuck Schumer’s [D-N.Y.] desk in the Senate right now. That would have actually fixed the problem,” Johnson said, referring to the southern border crisis.

The back-and-forth via interviews came in the immediate days following President Biden’s executive action Tuesday, which would turn away migrants seeking asylum who cross the southern border illegally at times when daily encounters reach high volumes.

The order would take effect when the seven-day average of daily border crossings exceed 2,500 between ports of entry, senior administration officials, meaning it went into effect immediately.

The Speaker slammed the order ahead of its unveiling, telling reporters it was “weak” and calling it “window dressing.”

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