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(WASHINGTON) — Speaker Mike Johnson’s office said Tuesday that it will delay the transmission of two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas — pushing the process’ start until next week.

Johnson had said he would send the articles of impeachment to the Senate on Wednesday, which would immediately trigger the Senate’s next moves on Thursday. A full-scale trial on the Senate floor is not likely, according to senators and leadership aides — despite what many House Republicans want.

“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,” Taylor Haulsee, a spokesman for Johnson, said in a statement. “There is no reason whatsoever for the Senate to abdicate its responsibility to hold an impeachment trial.”

The House voted to impeach Mayorkas on Feb. 13 by a vote of 214-213 over what Republicans claimed was his failure to enforce border laws amid a “crisis” of high illegal immigration, allegations the secretary denied as “baseless.”

DHS has criticized the impeachment efforts.

“Without a shred of evidence or legitimate Constitutional grounds, and despite bipartisan opposition, House Republicans have falsely smeared a dedicated public servant who has spent more than 20 years enforcing our laws and serving our country,” DHS spokesperson Mia Ehrenberg said. “Secretary Mayorkas and the Department of Homeland Security will continue working every day to keep Americans safe.”

Delaying the transmission of Mayorkas’ impeachment articles could potentially help Senate Republicans avoid an attendance issue if debate over the impeachment extends into Thursday evening. Senate Republicans will want to be present in full force to vote against dismissing the trial in the event that a single Democrat defects and decides to vote to advance one.

“If we want to exactly, you know, have an opportunity in the Senate to have a more fulsome discussion about this when the articles come over, there are times when that could probably happen better than having it come over tomorrow night and then trying to deal with it Thursday afternoon,” Senate Republican Whip John Thune said this afternoon.

Democrats control 51 seats in the Senate, so if they stick together, they can dismiss a trial without any GOP support if they so choose.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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