Mayorkas baffled by Dem rep’s bizarre historical trivia in border hearing

DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas appeared irritated by a peculiar line of questioning by a Democratic congressman whose questions involved him quizzing the top official on presidential history. The moment occurred at a House Judiciary Committee hearing where Mayorkas was appearing. Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., took his line of questioning to “discuss with you the history of the southern border.” “In September 1969, a few years before Watergate consumed this presidential administration, the president launched Operation Intercept, which basically shut down the southern border. Less than three weeks later, that operation was stopped because it largely failed to address the issues at the border,” Lieu said. “Secretary Mayorkas, who was the Republican president in 1969?” Lieu asked.  JUDICIARY CHAIR JORDAN TELLS MAYORKAS TO ‘BE PREPARED’ AHEAD OF KEY HEARING ON BORDER CRISIS  “Congressman, I have to think back sequentially in reverse chronology, but I’m sure you know the answer immediately,” Mayorkas responded. “I’ll give you a hint — this Republican president resigned,” Lieu said. “Congressman, I know the president — President Nixon,” Mayorkas stated correctly. HOUSE HOMELAND GOP REPORT ACCUSES MAYORKAS OF ‘INTENTIONAL’ DERELICTION OF DUTY OVER BORDER CRISIS Despite the awkward moment, Lieu continued. “After Nixon resigned in 1974, his vice president became president. But the issues at the border continued, and in 1976, the president stated, ‘80 to 90% of the heroin that comes in the United States today comes across from our southern border,'” he said. “Secretary Mayorkas, who was the Republican president in 1976?” before adding, after a pause by Mayorkas, “he was the vice president to Richard Nixon.” “Gerald Ford are you speaking of?” Mayorkas responded. As Lieu went to continue with his questioning, Mayorkas interrupted. MIGRANT NUMBERS DROP SHARPLY IN JUNE AS BIDEN ADMIN’S POST-TITLE 42 STRATEGY TAKES SHAPE “Congressman, I prefer not to answer questions of history right now. My focus is on the work of the Department of Homeland Security,” he said. However, Lieu continued with his narrative of history, later asking Mayorkas to identify presidents Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Donald Trump at different points. And Mayorkas went along with the questions and answered them.  It was one of the more bizarre moments in a fiery hearing where Republicans took aim at Mayorkas for his handling of the southern border. Democrats used their time to aid Mayorkas and allow him to respond to much of the criticism he faced over the crisis now in its third year. In one instance, he was accused by Rep. Victoria Spartz, R-Ind., of participating in a “charade” and sitting before lawmakers “with a very smiley face.” “Let me allow the record to reflect I am not smiling, nor have I smiled,” Mayorkas later stated. Fox News’ Matteo Cina contributed to this report.
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