Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) laid into DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas during a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing Tuesday, blasting him for refusing to answer questions about an anti-Israel, pro-Hamas DHS employee’s employment status.
As American Greatness reported earlier this month, Nejwa Ali, a radical former spokeswoman for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), is currently employed at the Department of Homeland Security in the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) division.
On October 7, the day Hamas invaded Israel, Ali cheered the attack and wrote “F-ck Israel” on social media, making clear that her primary allegiance was with the Palestinians, not the United States. During their savage attack, Hamas terrorists targeted young people at a dance party and civilians in their homes, slaughtering more than 1,400 people and leaving 5,400 wounded. Civilians, including women, the elderly, children, and even babies were shot, stabbed, beheaded, and hacked to death in their homes by the bloodthirsty terrorists.
That same day, Ali posted a graphic of armed Hamas terrorists paragliding into the country and punctuated the post with multiple emojis, including the smiling face with heart eyes emoji😍 and a partying face emoji 🥳.
Hawley wanted to know if Ali had been fired yet.
But first, the Missouri senator asked Mayorkas about radical Muslims who are in the United States on student visas. Hawley asked if Muslim protesters should have their visas revoked if they chant genocidal slogans like “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” Mayorkas said the Department was “assessing” the legal interpretation of US immigration laws. Some statutes deem foreigners ineligible for entry into the US if they “endorses or espouses terrorist activity or persuades others to endorse or espouse terrorist activity or support a terrorist organization.”
Unsatisfied with the secretary’s answer, Hawley moved on to question him about Nejwa Ali’s employment status at DHS.
“What about people who say things on October 7 like ‘eff Israel’—I’m cleaning up the language here—’eff Israel, the government and its military. Are you ready for your downfall?” he asked.
Hawley continued reading Ali’s violent and anti-Semitic social media posts: “‘Eff Israel and any Jew who supports Israel,’ may your conscience haunt your dreams until your last breath. Palestine will be free one day, Eff Apartheid Israel and any Israeli …’ This is pretty extreme rhetoric, don’t you think?” Hawley asked.
Mayorkas indicated that he agreed, but noted that there was a distinction between “expressing or endorsing terrorist ideology, and speech that is odious but does not rise to that level.”
“Fair enough, but this person works for you—Nejwa Ali,” Hawley shot back. “An employee of the Department of Homeland Security who posted these comments on October 7!”
Hawley’s staffers staff then pulled out a poster-sized image of Ali’s post celebrating armed Hamas terrorists paragliding into Israel to slaughter civilians.
“This is a Hamas paraglider depicted here with a machine gun flying into Israel,” the senator said. “Mr. Secretary, what is going on here? Is this typical of people who work at DHS? This is an asylum and immigration officer who is posting these frankly pro-genocidal slogans and images on the day that Israelis are being slaughtered in their beds. What have you done about this?”
Mayorkas reacted to the question with great umbrage.
“There are four things I’d like to say to you,” he replied angrily, holding up four fingers. “Number one, your question—to suggest that is emblematic of the men and women of the Department of Homeland Security—is despicable!”
“I’m sorry!” Hawley interjected loudly. “This person works for the Department of Homeland Security. Have you fired her?!”
“That was one of four answers,” Mayorkas responded indignantly.
“Have you fired her?!” Hawley asked again. “HAVE YOU FIRED HER?! Don’t come to this hearing room when Israel has been invaded and Jewish students are barricaded in libraries in this country and cannot be escorted out because they are threatened for their lives, he continued agitatedly. “You have employees that are celebrating genocide and you are saying it’s despicable for me to ask the question?!”
Mayorkas asked the committee chairman to allow him to speak.
“Have you fired her?!” Hawley asked yet again.
“That individual has been placed on administrative leave,” Mayorkas finally answered.
“So she’s not been fired! Hawley exclaimed.
“Number two,” Mayorkas began, before Hawley interrupted again.
“Why has she not been fired?!”
“Number two, the individual was hired in 2019,” Mayorkas continued, in an effort to blame the Trump administration for the problematic hire.
“Why has she not been fired?” Hawley insisted.
“Number three, I cannot speak to an ongoing personnel matter,” Mayorkas added.
“Why has this person not been fired,” the senator asked again. “Your answer is you can’t speak to it? This isn’t sufficient to fire her?”
“I am not in a position to speak to an ongoing personnel matter,” the secretary repeated. The story about Ali’s employment was first reported almost two weeks ago by Luke Rosiak in the Daily Wire.
“This isn’t sufficient to fire her? That’s what you’re telling me?” Hawley asked.
“That is not what I’m saying,” the peeved DHS secretary responded.
“But she’s still on your payroll as we sit here today,” Hawley said.
“That is not what I’m saying,” Mayorkas repeated.
The Missouri senator then asked him hoe many cases Ali had adjudicated as an immigration officer.
Mayorkas said again that he wasn’t in a position to answer a question “about an ongoing personnel matter.”
“I’m not asking you about that, I’m asking about how many cases she adjudicated,” Hawley shot back.
The secretary said that his answer remained the same.
But Hawley wanted to know whether Ali had power to adjudicate immigration matters pertaining to Israelis seeking asylum in the United States.
The senator had staffers pull out another poster-sized post of Ali’s in which she bragged about being a DHS asylum officer, punctuating the post with pro-Palestinian hashtags and emojis.
“I think the American people deserve to know,” Hawley insisted. “Has she admitted, contrary to law, individuals who should not be in this country, or denied Jewish refugees whose genocide she’s advocating asylum they deserve?”
Mayorkas again refused to answer.
“Are conducting a review of her cases at least?” the senator asked.
The secretary again repeated that he couldn’t comment on the “ongoing personnel matter.”
Finally, Hawley blew up at the secretary’s “despicable” performance, saying: “You know about this! I’ve written to you about it. You know all about it! And you come here unwilling to answer and suggest that it’s wrong of me to ask the question.”
He added: “Quite frankly, Mr. Secretary, I think your performance is despicable. And I think the fact that you are not willing to provide answers to this committee is absolutely atrocious!”