House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) called for the impeachment of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, becoming the highest-ranking GOP leader to do so.

“This, to me, is the greatest malfeasance, and malfeasance is — it’s not a failure to act — it’s an intentional failure to act. Mayorkas should be impeached,” Emmer told Breitbart News in an interview on Friday. “I think we should be talking seriously about that regardless of what this feckless Senate might want to do.”

He is not the only GOP leader escalating their rhetoric against Mayorkas. In an interview with The Hill last week, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.) stopped short of calling for impeachment, but he signaled that Republicans are preparing to take action against Mayorkas.

“You’re seeing a lot of a lot of questions being raised about the competence of Secretary Mayorkas and there’s been legislation filed and that’s going through the committee process right now,” Scalise said. “The committee has also been doing work on looking into holding Secretary Mayorkas accountable, and that process is going to play out — and it’s far from over.”

In a statement responding to Emmer’s support for impeachment, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) spokesperson called on Congress to pass immigration reform legislation.

“Secretary Mayorkas is proud to advance the noble mission of this Department, support its extraordinary workforce, and serve the American people,” the DHS statement said. “The Department will continue to enforce our laws and secure our border, protect the nation from terrorism, improve our cybersecurity, all while building a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system. Instead of pointing fingers and pursuing a baseless impeachment, Congress should work with the Department and pass legislation to fix our broken immigration system, which has not been updated in over 40 years.”

Emmer’s call to impeach Mayorkas comes just after House Republicans passed a border crackdown bill, and as Title 42, the pandemic-era policy that allowed for the rapid expulsion of migrants, expired.

Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has repeatedly said House Republicans will not impeach Biden administration officials for political purposes and will first conduct an investigation.

Multiple committees have been investigating Mayorkas’s management of the U.S.-Mexico border since the GOP took control of the House. 

House Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), who would oversee impeachment proceedings, has repeatedly said the U.S. does not have “operational control” of the U.S.-Mexico border — referring to a legal argument that would likely form the basis of a House GOP impeachment push. Jordan has asserted that is intentional on the part of Mayorkas, also playing into a case for impeachment.

“I know that we’re going to have members — much like other constitutional disagreements we’ve had, there’s probably going to be a member who says … who’s a stickler about high crimes and misdemeanors,” Emmer told Breitbart News. “I believe if you look at the actual law and the precedent that’s been set — and forget about the phony impeachment stuff that the Democrats have been doing for political stunts — this one’s a real, real issue. You can see the pictures live every day. You have an administration and an idiot that’s in charge of the border.”

Reps. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) and Pat Fallon (R-Texas) have filed impeachment articles against Mayorkas, and 57 other House Republicans have cosponsored one of both of those resolutions.

Updated at 3:08 p.m.