Democratic rep says he might vote in favor of impeaching Mayorkas over border wall construction

A House Democrat said he might vote in favor of impeaching Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas over the construction of two 30-foot walls at the border with Mexico. 

Rep. Juan Vargas (D-Calif.) said at a press conference on Friday that he might vote for an impeachment resolution if Republicans bring one up against Mayorkas, though for different reasoning than his GOP colleagues. 

While Republicans have slammed Mayorkas and the Biden administration for high numbers of undocumented immigrants coming into the country, Vargas said he might vote to impeach Mayorkas over the issue of the border walls being built at Friendship Park in San Diego. 

The park is located on a cliff over the Pacific Ocean between San Diego and Tijuana, Mexico, according to Border Report, an outlet owned by Nexstar Media Group that focuses on coverage of the U.S.-Mexico border. 

The Hill is also owned by Nexstar. 

Vargas said he wants Mayorkas and President Biden to halt the construction of the walls at Friendship Park, which Border Report reported has served as a meeting place for families to gather with a wall between them. 

“He told us that he would help us, and he hasn’t done it,” Vargas said, referring to Mayorkas. “He betrayed us.” 

The outlet reported that U.S. Border Patrol officials have said the existing barriers are decaying and have become a danger to the public, migrants and agents in the area. They have said the barriers need to be replaced with the new walls. 

But Vargas, who represents the area in the House, and other local leaders have expressed concerns that the walls will end public access to the area. Vargas said Mayorkas promised him that the construction would be stopped. 

The construction started a few weeks ago and is expected to be completed in six months, the outlet reported. 

The Department of Homeland Security hired an outside law firm last month to help Mayorkas respond to a potential Republican-led impeachment inquiry. Mayorkas has vowed that he would not be pushed out of his position by his opponents. 

Republicans in the House have been somewhat divided about the path forward on Mayorkas, however, as some wanted to impeach Mayorkas immediately upon the GOP taking control of the House, while others wanted to take time to build a case against him. 

Two articles of impeachment have been introduced in the House against Mayorkas. 

Vargas is the first Democrat to publicly say they are open to considering an impeachment vote against Mayorkas.