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Archive for January 19th, 2021

Alejandro Mayorkas Will Pledge to Thwart Future Assaults on U.S. Institutions

Alejandro Mayorkas

By Steve Neavling

Alejandro Mayorkas, who is President-elect Joe Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security, plans to tell lawmakers today that one of his top priorities is preventing attacks similar to the Capitol siege, POLITICO reports.

Mayorkas, 61, is to make the pledge during his appearance before the Senate Homeland Security Committee.  

“If I should have the honor of being confirmed, I will do everything I can to ensure that the tragic loss of life, the assault on law enforcement, the desecration of the building that stands as one of the three pillars of our democracy, and the terror felt by you, your colleagues, staff, and everyone present, will not happen again,” Mayorkas, 61, plans to tell lawmakers in his opening statement.

Senate Democrats are hoping to get Mayorkas confirmed as early as this week because of the national security threats. 

Mayorkas is poised to become the first immigrant and Hispanic to lead the department. 

Mayorkas served as deputy homeland security secretary from 2013 to 2016 under President Obama. A former U.S. attorney in California, Mayorkas also served as director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services during Obama’s first term. 

Born in Cuba, Mayorkas and her family arrived as refugees in the 1960s, settling in Southern California. His mother was a Holocaust survivor. Mayorkas graduated from the University of California-Berkeley and earned a law degree from Loyola Law School. 

“The love for this country that I learned from my parents made the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol all the more horrifying,” Mayorkas plans to tell senators.

Trump Slammed Comey for ‘Erratic’ Behavior in Previously Unseen Letter

Former FBI Director James Comey.

By Steve Neavling

Just days before President Trump fired James Comey in May 2017, he assailed his FBI director for “erratic” and “self-indulgent” conduct in a four-page letter that was never sent because White House lawyers advised against it. 

The letter was finally made public Monday after ABC News received a copy of its contents.

“Your conduct has grown unpredictable and even erratic – including rambling and self-indulgent public performances that have baffled experts, citizens and law enforcement professionals alike – making it impossible for you to effectively lead this agency,” Trump wrote to Comey.

The letter assailed Comey for “spen[ding] too much time cultivating a public image, and not enough time getting your own house in order.”

About half the letter addressed Comey’s handling of the FBI’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server. That included Comey’s congressional testimony shortly before the letter was penned. In the letter, Trump called the testimony “another media circus full of unprofessional conjecture, bizarre legal theories, and irresponsible speculation.”

The letter then falsely claimed that Comey’s “strange legal decisions and contradictory public statements” had “sowed confusion” and inspired “a near-rebellion by many rank-and-file agents” within the FBI.

The letter also chided Comey’s “failure” to prevent “rampant leaking. 

“You’ve shown a total inability to control leaks, both within and outside the agency. As a result, intelligence — real and fake – has been weaponized into an instrument of partisan warfare,” the letter said.

Trump concluded, “America needs an FBI director who inspires confidence across all layers of government, and who the public believes to be fair, impartial and beyond reproach.”