(Bethany Blankley, The Center Square) In a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on oversight of the Department of Homeland Security, its secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas, said he supported a federal assault weapons but couldn’t define what an assault weapon is.
U.S. Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., asked Mayorkas, ”Do you agree with the president that we should ban the private ownership of assault weapons in America?”
“I do,” he replied.
Kennedy then asked, “What is an assault weapon?”
Mayorkas replied, “an AK-47.”
“Can you give me a specific definition other than pointing to a specific weapon?” Kennedy asked.
Mayorkas replied by stating he used to be a federal prosecutor in the late 1980s in California and that those in law enforcement he worked with support an assault weapons ban.
Kennedy replied, “Do you know why we get so frustrated with you? Because you won’t give straight answers.”
“I just did,” Mayorkas said.
“No you didn’t,” Kennedy replied. “Do you have a definition of an assault weapon?” he asked again.
“I’m confident there is a technical definition,” Mayorkas replied.
When questioned by Cruz, Mayorkas refused to answer yes or no questions or sat in silence. He also said he didn’t know data publicly available and published by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, an agency he oversees.
Mayorkas said no murderers had been released into the country under his watch, a claim in direct opposition to CBP data. He also said he didn’t know how many foreign nationals had died trying to enter the country illegally, how many terrorists had been apprehended attempting to cross the border, and didn’t know about bracelets that cartels use to keep track of the people they are smuggling across the border.
At one point, Cruz, in disbelief of his answers, told Mayorkas, “If you have any integrity, you’d resign.”
Kennedy also asked Mayorkas, “Our southern border is not secure, is it?”
“When I speak of security I’m speaking of maximizing resources to make sure we have the most effective results,” Mayorkas replied.
“So it’s secure because we’re trying to secure it?” Kennedy asked. “Are we succeeding?”
“We are so focused on the security of our southern border we are doing so much,” Mayorkas replied.
Kennedy listed the record number of illegal foreign nationals entering the country, the record number of gotaways, the record number of terrorists, and other categories he said were the highest under the Biden administration “in the history of ever.”
The National Border Patrol Council, the union representing Border Patrol agents, took issue with claims Mayorkas made denying how Mexican cartels use groups of hundreds of people to pull Border Patrol from the line, called “task saturation.” It’s a strategy employed to burden Border Patrol agents with processing paperwork, pulling them from the field and line of defense, so the border is left open for cartels to smuggle people and drugs. Border Patrol chiefs explained this tactic in testimony given at House and Senate committee hearings earlier this year.
Mayorkas claiming “cartels don’t use illegal aliens to tie up BP agents, which allows them to smuggle other items across the border,” the NBPC said, “is a lie. Cartels don’t profit billions because they’re stupid. Leftists like Mayorkas profit because they think the American people are stupid.”
It posted a picture of Mayorkas on social media, stating, “A national disgrace.”