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House GOP Normalizes Deadly Conspiracies Via Sham Mayorkas Impeachment Push, While Staying Silent on Trump’s Escalating Threats

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Washington, DC – Yesterday,  the House voted on Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s privileged resolution to initiate the impeachment of Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas. The impeachment articles were rife with inaccuracies and invoked white nationalist conspiratorial rhetoric associated with multiple deadly terrorist attacks in recent years. All Democrats and eight Republicans voted to send the Articles of Impeachment to the House Homeland Security Committee, instead of the up or down vote Rep. Greene requested. But, most battleground Republicans in Biden-won congressional districts, including Juan Ciscomani (R-AZ), Jen Kiggans (R-VA), and David Valadao (R-CA), sided with Rep. Greene’s white nationalist conspiracy resolution, despite their attempts to portray themselves to their voters as “moderates.” 

This vote came as the media and the public are becoming more aware of Donald Trump’s anti-democratic threats and dangerous plans of mass-roundups and retribution against political enemies if he is reelected. Over the weekend, Trump invoked Nazi rhetoric while his top aides, Stephen Miller and Steven Cheung, vowed vengeance against those who opposed them. That’s why we are seeing headlines like “It’s Official: With “Vermin,” Trump Is Now Using Straight-up Nazi Talk” at the New Republic and “Donald Trump’s use of the word ‘vermin’ draws more comparisons to Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini” at USA Today.  At the Washington Post, Greg Sargent aptly described their agenda: “Trump and Stephen Miller are testing the public’s willingness to accept an agenda built on white nationalist sadism.”

According to Vanessa Cárdenas, Executive Director of America’s Voice:

“More than 95 percent of House Republicans voted to proceed for a Secretary Mayorkas impeachment based on a white nationalist conspiracy theory that has already inspired multiple domestic terrorists. Meanwhile, the GOP and its supposed Republican moderates are silent on the increasingly dehumanizing rhetoric and mass-deportation plans of Donald Trump. Republicans’ political agenda, from Trump and all throughout the House GOP ranks, increasingly appears to be taking the country in a dangerous and authoritarian direction and towards a massive upheaval – think mass roundups, mass detention, and massive economic collapse. They are not engaged in a debate about how to regulate and manage migration, but are instead trying to advance a vision that strikes at the very heart of the promise of America as an inclusive democracy.” 

Additional Resources and Background

  • Read the statement from 5 organizations assessing the impeachment push of Sec. Mayorkas and larger dangerous implications: “Experts and Advocates Condemn Use of Deadly White Nationalist and Antisemitic Replacement Theory Rhetoric in Effort to Impeach DHS Secretary Mayorkas”
  • New research from America’s Voice Political Associate Yuna Oh found at least 17  Republican Members previously engaging in such deadly racist rhetoric, including Speaker of the House Mike Johnson.
  • Impeachment Articles and Larger Effort Rely on Dangerous White Nationalist Conspiracies and Lies: The impeachment articles themselves (including use of dangerous “invasion” rhetoric and accusing Secretary Mayorkas of “willfully abandoning his duty”) echo the white nationalist conspiracies that Rep. Taylor Greene and many of her colleagues have mainstreamed. The continued use of deadly white nationalist rhetoric goes well beyond a policy debate – our country has experienced violence inspired by this conspiracy-driven rhetoric in multiple real world attacks in recent years.
  • Republicans are the Party Loudly Proclaiming the U.S. has “Open Borders”:  While some of the GOP Members highlighted “open borders” in their focus on Mayorkas, recent polling and research released by America’s Voice highlights the role of the right wing in driving this falsehood. Pervasive disinformation about “open borders” – including from U.S. right wing politicians and media – contributes to Central American migration to the U.S. As Vanessa Cárdenas wrote in a recent op-ed, “Anyone who is serious about workable solutions and addressing 21st-century migration should join together and call on right-wing media and politicians to stop amplifying disinformation and start putting workable solutions on the table.”
  • About the GOP’s “Operational Control” Justification for Impeachment – no DHS Secretary Ever Would Have Met that Standard: Judging by the definition of “operational control” used by the GOP Members who cite “The Secure Fence Act of 2006” as the supposed impeachment rationale, no DHS Secretary ever, including anyone serving in that post under Trump, would have met that standard. Even the Berlin Wall would have failed to meet that standard. It’s a goal that can never be met – by design. Why? It’s all about politics – remember a right wing drumbeat started blaming Biden’s policies for a rise in border encounters occurring during the Trump presidency. The GOP attempt to “blame Biden”and “blame Mayokas” underscores their motivations are more about partisan talking points than real substance.