by Sharon Rondeau
(Mar. 22, 2021) — While conducting a phone interview with 45th President Donald J. Trump on Monday, host of Fox News’s “The Faulkner Focus” Harris Faulkner erroneously declared that DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas had just resigned.
Having expressed strong criticism of Joe Biden’s policies and Mayorkas’s performance and “abilities” Sunday night in a formal statement from his office, Trump lauded the alleged development with, “I’m not surprised; good. That’s a big victory for our country.”
During Mayorkas’s interviews on several Sunday-morning talk shows discussing the dramatic influx of illegal aliens, particularly unaccompanied minors, encountered at the southern border since just before Biden took office, Mayorkas placed a portion of the blame on Trump’s having “dismantled the orderly, humane, and efficient way of allowing children to make their claims under US law in their home countries,” referring to requests for political asylum.
The number of minor illegal-alien children in U.S. custody as of Sunday is 15,500, CBS reported.
Trump’s statement issued Sunday reads, in part:
We proudly handed the Biden Administration the most secure border in history. All they had to do was keep this smooth-running system on autopilot. Instead, in the span of a just few weeks, the Biden Administration has turned a national triumph into a national disaster. They are in way over their heads and taking on water fast.
The pathetic, clueless performance of Secretary Mayorkas on the Sunday Shows today was a national disgrace. His self-satisfied presentation—in the middle of the massive crisis he helped engineer—is yet more proof he is incapable of leading DHS. Even someone of Mayorkas’ limited abilities should understand that if you provide Catch-and-Release to the world’s illegal aliens then the whole world will come.
Almost immediately after her statement claiming Mayorkas had resigned, Faulkner apparently received a reversal from her production team and corrected herself. Many news sources reported the error as “fake news” and “false.”
Faulkner then asked Trump why he believes Mayorkas should step aside and why he was speaking out against his successor. “Well, you called me; I didn’t call you, in all fairness,” he responded.
Mayorkas was confirmed by the Senate on February 2, although some Republicans raised the issue of a DHS inspector general’s finding that while serving as DHS Deputy Director under Barack Obama, he practiced “favoritism” and awarded “special access” to individuals connected with influential Democrats by instituting a review procedure for cases already denied visas by career agency decision-makers.
Senate Republicans voting in favor of Mayorkas’s confirmation were Shelley Moore Capito, Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, Mitt Romney, Dan Sullivan, and Rob Portman, CBS reported, although Portman himself raised questions regarding the ethics of Mayorkas’s actions at the time, when Mayorkas headed U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
According to his Obama-regime bio at the time, which referred to his service from 2009 to 2013, “During his tenure, Mr. Mayorkas enhanced USCIS efforts to promote an awareness and understanding of citizenship, and ensure the integrity of the immigration system. He set goals and standards that led USCIS to bolster its national security safeguards and ability to combat fraud, reinforce quality and consistency in administering immigration benefits, foster organizational excellence, improve promotion of citizenship and immigrant civic integration, and enhance customer service and public engagement.”
In 2013, Mayorkas was promoted to DHS deputy secretary, which also required Senate confirmation.
On Thursday, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) called upon Mayorkas to resign amid reports that the southwest border surge is out of control. According to many mainstream reports, journalists have not been permitted to access holding facilities for illegals to observe conditions, and the U.S. Border Patrol has reportedly received instructions to “limit” the information they share with the media.
On March 16, DHS issued a press release claiming that most “single adults” arriving at the border are “being expelled under the CDC’s authority to manage the public health crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic.” Approximately 6% of “migrants” entering the country have tested “positive” for COVID, “a lower percentage than the overall positivity rate in the state of Texas,” CBS reported the same day.
“We are on pace to encounter more individuals on the southwest border than we have in the last 20 years,” the bulletin further claims. “We are expelling most single adults and families. We are not expelling unaccompanied children. We are securing our border, executing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) public health authority to safeguard the American public and the migrants themselves, and protecting the children. We have more work to do.”
“Key changes — such as measures to reverse controversial Trump-era policies — have led to thousands of migrants, and many unaccompanied children, to come to the US-Mexico border from Central America,” Business Insider reported on Monday. “Guerilla” journalist James O’Keefe of Project Veritas reported Monday of a holding facility for illegals in Donna, TX “shocking images showing people wrapped up in what looks like metal foil laying on the ground, their faces covered…”
Irrespective of Faulkner’s error, Mayorkas resigned his post as DHS Deputy Director three months earlier than expected in the waning days of the Obama regime. An article by The Daily Caller dated October 5, 2016 reported that Mayorkas tendered his resignation effective October 28. “The announcement follows an investigation by The Daily Caller News Foundation that showed neither the DHS, nor the Office of Government Ethics properly examined major ethics violations related to his fast-tracking of visas for a company run by Hillary Clinton’s brother,” the article states.
Another of TDC’s articles written two days earlier had implicated former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton’s brother Tony in requesting favors of Mayorkas.
In an undated special report referring to events unfolding in 2015, ABC News’s Brian Ross and Matthew Mosk wrote of the alleged abuse of the EB-5 “Immigrant Investor Program” and Mayorkas’s involvement:
The federal official who oversaw the growth of the program, Deputy Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, told lawmakers last year that any weaknesses in the program have been tightened. But whistleblowers told ABC News that little has changed since concerns were raised about visa applicants being approved despite being suspected of fraud, money laundering, and in one instance, possible involvement in selling child pornography.
The ABC article contains a link to an earlier one dated February 3, 2015 titled, “Whistleblowers: US Gave Visas to Suspected Forgers, Fraudsters, Criminals” which reported that Mayorkas was personally asked by then-Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) to review a case in which a visa applicant had been denied access because of “red flags” identified by DHS employees.
…Homeland Security whistleblowers who spoke with ABC News on the condition they not be identified said their greatest concern was that political pressure to expedite the review process has led officials to grant visas to applicants who had significant red flags in their backgrounds.
When the SLS Hotel chain sought to fund construction of a hotel on the Las Vegas strip using foreign investors, Reid and his aides urged immigration officials to speed up their review of the visa applicants, internal emails show. Each visa applicant approval meant another $500,000 could flow into the construction budget, and the developers were anticipating as much as $200 million from foreign investors.
Michael Vannozzi, then a top aide to the senator, wrote to say that a failure by immigration officials to push through approvals could cause the project’s major investor, JP Morgan Chase, to back out. Emails show Reid personally appealed to the then-head of USCIS, Alijandro N. Mayorkas, to give the matter his attention. Mayorkas, who has since been promoted to deputy secretary, responded to the request by saying he would take “a fresh look” at the issue.
On March 24, 2015, ABC produced a comprehensive article relating the findings of the Inspector General who examined whistleblowers’ complaints of Mayorkas’s allegedly compromising actions while leading USCIS. The report itself, consisting of one page dated the same day, states:
The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General has concluded its investigation into allegations that former USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas exerted improper influence in the normal processing and adjudication of EB-5 immigration program benefits.
In three matters pending before USCIS, Mr. Mayorkas, now Deputy Secretary of DHS, communicated with stakeholders on substantive issues outside of the normal adjudicatory process, and intervened with the career USCIS staff in ways that benefited the stakeholders. Mr. Mayorkas’ conduct led many USCIS employees to reasonably believe that specific individuals or groups were being given special access or consideration in the EB-5 program.
An extraordinary number of DHS employees came forward to the Inspector General’s office to report these events and cooperate with our investigation. The OIG will protect the confidentiality of these courageous employees, and we hope that their actions will set an example for all potential whistleblowers that look to the Office of Inspector General to give them a voice.