GOP Senators Pressured Speaker Johnson to Delay Delivery of Mayorkas Impeachment Articles -
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GOP Senators Pressured Speaker Johnson to Delay Delivery of Mayorkas Impeachment Articles

Republican senators convinced House Speaker Mike Johnson, a representative from Louisiana, to postpone sending two impeachment articles against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

They expressed worries that Senate Democrats might move to swiftly dismiss the articles once a trial commences in the Senate.

“To ensure the Senate has adequate time to perform its constitutional duty, the House will transmit the articles of impeachment to the Senate next week. There is no reason whatsoever for the Senate to abdicate its responsibility to hold an impeachment trial,” a spokesperson for Johnson told Fox News Digital on Tuesday.

According to a source familiar with the situation speaking to Fox News Digital, at least 10 Republican senators stated that they were actively urging the speaker to hold off on sending the articles.

They aim to prevent Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from New York, and the Democratic caucus from quickly bringing the trial to a halt before the weekend, allowing senators to leave shortly after.

Last week, Schumer informed senators in a letter addressed to colleagues that proceedings would kick off on Thursday, as per standard procedure, following the anticipated delivery of the articles on Wednesday. Johnson had already specified the delivery date in a previous letter sent to Schumer.

According to the source, GOP senators talked about their efforts to persuade Johnson during a lunch at the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s headquarters on Tuesday.

Confirming their involvement, the offices of Senators Mike Lee of Utah and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin stated that both senators were actively engaged in convincing the speaker to delay the delivery.

According to the source, Republicans see a delay as advantageous because it provides more time for debating the articles of impeachment against Mayorkas, without the pressure of the approaching weekend.

“We have a chance to talk about the issue,” Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., explained the delay’s effect.

“Thursday afternoon, senators rush to the airport and fly to get out of here. Schumer wants it on a Thursday afternoon because he wants no coverage,” Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, added at a Tuesday GOP press conference on the status of the impeachment trial.

House Homeland Security Committee Chair Mark Green, a Republican from Tennessee and the lead impeachment manager, stepped out of Johnson’s office shortly after the announcement and informed reporters, “We were ready to go tomorrow.”

Green stated that he hadn’t been contacted by Senate Republicans about the delay but affirmed his support for the decision made by House GOP leaders.

He declined to disclose whether he had spoken with Johnson before the delay was announced, stating to, “We had a phone conversation, the contents of which will remain between the speaker and I.”

Rep. Andy Biggs, a Republican from Arizona and another impeachment manager, informed Fox News Digital that he wasn’t caught off guard by the announcement, as he had been in communication with certain Senate Republicans advocating for the delay. He said, “I had been talking with some of my Republican friends in the Senate. And so I was not really surprised.”

During the Tuesday lunch, GOP senators also talked about their desire to increase pressure on their Democratic colleagues, the source further revealed.

Many senators expressed support for a strategy to halt all legislative activities if Democrats decided to table the Mayorkas trial. This strategy would involve Republicans refusing to provide a quorum or cast votes, among other actions.

GOP senators have emphasized that tabling the trial would be “historic,” as such an occurrence has never happened without the impeached official leaving office first.

“This is our job,” Sen. Eric Schmitt, R-Mo., said during the press conference Tuesday.

Multiple Senate Republicans criticized Schumer for their anticipation that he would seek to swiftly conclude the trial. Nevertheless, Schumer has not indicated any specific plans for what Democrats will do.

Democratic senators have previously informed Fox News Digital that they believe their caucus will pursue such a strategic procedural maneuver.

“They are nuking a provision of the Constitution,” Lee said during a Republican press conference on Tuesday. 

The Utah Republican also told reporters, “I’m grateful to Speaker Johnson for his bold willingness to delay this.”

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