Republican West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito grilled Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas on Wednesday about the border crisis. Specifically, she pressed him on whether claims the administration is controlling the border sufficiently would count as “disinformation.”
Mayorkas, appearing before the Senate Committee on Appropriations, was asked whether his claims about the border being under control would count as “disinformation” under the department’s new Disinformation Governance Board.
“I think, quite honestly, for the good of the rest of the department, that now is a good time to abandon this ludicrous and much maligned idea. I wonder, when you say that we have operational control of the border, is that definitionally disinformation?” Capito asked. “Because, from a lot of our perspectives, we don’t believe that is true.”
“So it seems such a subjective and undefined, what disinformation is. I would challenge you to punt this and rethink … to make sure that the American people really understand what’s going on here.”
“The work [of the board] is so very important in achieving a mission in a way that does not infringe on free speech, on civil rights and civil liberties, on right of privacy, our work in this department in addressing disinformation that threatens security of the homeland has been going on for almost 10 years,” Mayorkas responded. (RELATED: Mayorkas Says Disinformation Board Will Not ‘Infringe On Free Speech’)
Mayorkas then explained the department put together a working group to ensure there are “guardrails” in place to protect free speech and other civil liberties of Americans.
Mayorkas recently testified that the DHS will still maintain control of the border amid the expected tidal wave of migrants following the end of Title 42.
“It is our responsibility to maintain operational control of the border,” Mayorkas testified. “That is what our personnel are dedicated to doing. That is what the personnel throughout the department and I as a secretary are dedicated in doing.”
“We will not lose operational control at the border.”
Mayorkas also claimed the Biden Administration has “effectively managed” the border crisis. Agents arrested 209,906 people in March alone at the border, the highest since March of 2000. Authorities encountered a record two million migrants in 2021.