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From Border Wall To Capitol Riot, Homeland Security Nominee Takes Senate Questions

Alejandro Mayorkas, nominee to be secretary of Homeland Security, is sworn in to testify during his confirmation hearing in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Tuesday.
Alejandro Mayorkas, nominee to be secretary of Homeland Security, is sworn in to testify during his confirmation hearing in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Tuesday.

President-elect Joe Biden's nominee to head the Department of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, appears before a Senate panel Tuesday to begin his confirmation process.

Mayorkas, who would be the first Latino and first immigrant to lead that Department, was previously the head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, a DHS agency, during the Obama administration. He then served as deputy secretary of DHS.

Watch the hearing live beginning at 10 a.m. ET.

In announcing his nominee in November, Biden said Mayorkas "will play a critical role in fixing our broken immigration system and understands that living up to our values and protecting our nation's security aren't mutually exclusive — and under his leadership, they'll go hand-in-hand."

Biden has pushed for swift confirmation of his nominees. He is on pace to have few, if any, Cabinet members confirmed on Inauguration Day.

After the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, however, there's been increased pressure to get national security officials confirmed quickly in order to prevent any gap during the transfer of power.

Biden's nominee for secretary of defense, retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin, and others in his security team also have Senate hearings Tuesday.

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