A Republican lawmaker said on Tuesday he would detain Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas if given the opportunity.
Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA), a former law enforcement officer, accused Mayorkas of committing a number of crimes due to a “wide open” southern border that he said is leading to American fatalities, particularly with tens of thousands of overdose deaths each year in the United States amid a surge in fentanyl trafficking.
“If I could arrest you for violations of Louisiana revised statutes, I would,” Higgins said during a Homeland Security Committee hearing on the border crisis.
Our southern border is controlled by cartels, and Mayorkas is responsible… pic.twitter.com/zRNVIzetyC
— Rep. Clay Higgins (@RepClayHiggins) February 28, 2023
Citing specific statutes, including one for negligent homicide and another for being a “principal” to a crime, as well as others, Higgins faulted Mayorkas specifically for deaths attributed to fentanyl. The lawmaker illustrated his point by showing the image of a 23-year-old named Sami whom he said died under the secretary’s watch.
“Remember her name,” Higgins said before vowing to ensure Mayorkas remembers other Americans “who are dead because of fentanyl coming across a border that you have blown wide open.”
The Daily Wire reached out to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for comment in response to Higgins’ remarks.
“Despite inheriting a dismantled immigration system and facing unprecedented migration that is affecting nations throughout the Western Hemisphere, this Administration has surged resources to the border, reduced the number of encounters between ports of entry, disrupted more smuggling operations than ever before, and interdicted more drugs in the last two years than had been stopped in the five years prior,” a DHS official said.
“Instead of pointing fingers and trying to score political points, Congress should work on legislative solutions for our broken immigration system, which it has not updated in over 40 years,” the official added.
During his time to speak, Higgins asked witness Mark Lamb, sheriff of Arizona’s Pinal County, if the country could “fix” its border in one week with adequate federal policies that would allow authorities to enforce the law in the face of widespread Mexican cartel activities.
“Yes, Mr. Higgins, we could do that,” Lamb replied. “A week might be tight, but 30 to 60 days we could definitely fix this. We’re America. We can stop this when we decide we want to stop it.”