In kicking off his 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump infamously branded Mexican (and by extension all Latino) immigrants as "criminals", "rapists" and "drug dealers". He then followed this up with a promise to ban all Muslims in the world from entering the US - a ban which - in watered down form,- was notoriously upheld by a politicized right-wing Supreme Court majority after Trump took office. Also, while Trump was in office, he not only pursued an agenda which violated the basic human rights of asylum-seekers at the US-Mexico border, but, under the direction of his immigration chief Stephen Miller, tried to shut down large parts of Americas' legal immigration system - including H-1B specialty occupation worker visas and most family-based green cards (through Miller's new "Public Charge" rule).

Since leaving office, (less than voluntarily) after losing the 2020 presidential election (which he has continued to lie about during the past two years) Trump has faced a slew of civil and criminal investigations, as well as large scale losses by candidates whom he backed in the 2020 election, which have sent many Republican leaders looking for a different standard-bearer in the 2024 presidential election. But have the Republicans given up the anti-immigrant racism which was (and still is, along with a recent dose of antisemitism) at the heart of Trump's appeal? Not if one looks at the furious GOP attacks on DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, whom they cannot forgive for injecting a few doses of respect for the humanity and human rights of non-European immigrants into US immigration enforcement policies.

One of the key and most consistent features of the Republicans' largely failed 2022 election campaign was stirring up animosity against brown and black immigrants at the Mexican border by using degrading and dehumanizing terms such as "invasion"; or, to use Trump's own phrase, accusing them of "destroying America." The current GOP calls to impeach Secretary Mayorkas for allegedly failing to control the border are nothing but a continuation of this racist policy. See:

The racist and dehumanizing GOP attacks on nonwhite immigrants began to go into high gear earlier this year when the Biden administration initially tried to put an end to the use of Title 42 of the US Code, which was supposed to be a health measure but which was deliberately misused by Trump and Stephen Miller as an anti-immigrant measure at the Mexican border. The Biden administration's effort to end this egregious misuse of Title 42 was greeted by a huge increase in GOP "xenophobic rhetoric", i.e. racist attacks, against brown and black immigrants. See:'t-exist/

We can expect even louder racist anti-immigrant rhetoric coming from Congressional GOP leaders, based on the so-called border "surge" or "invasion", during the coming two years. We can expect that calls to impeach Secretary Mayorkas will be a key part of of this agenda. Whether this strategy will work any better for the Republicans in 2024 than it did in 2022 remains to be seen. The GOP attempt to use anti-immigrant hatred to overthrow America's democracy failed in 2022. Will it succeed in 2024?

Roger Algase
Attorney at Law
Harvard Law School LL.B
Harvard College A.B.