Utah Sens. Mike Lee and Mitt Romney both emphasized the importance of moving forward with an impeachment trial after articles of impeachment for Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas were delivered to the Senate Tuesday afternoon.

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mark Green read aloud the charges against Mayorkas before House impeachment managers walked the two articles through the Capitol and delivered them to the Senate floor.

Several Senate Republicans, including Lee, held a press conference shortly after to discuss the proceedings and impending trial.

Will Mayorkas impeachment articles turn into a Senate trial?
Sen. Mike Lee pushes for Mayorkas’ impeachement trial, Sen. Mitt Romney hasn’t ruled out voting no

The impeachment process began in January when the the House Committee on Homeland Security held a full committee hearing to discuss Mayorkas’ handling of border security, as the Deseret News previously reported. In February, the House of Representatives’ first vote to impeach failed, but a second vote held a week later passed 214-213.

Lee: ‘Senate doesn’t get to ignore its duty’

Lee has been outspoken about his support for the impeachment. In a speech on the Senate floor on Monday, Lee moved to table all Senate business not related to the impeachment.

“The Senate doesn’t get to ignore its duty and give Secretary Mayorkas a pass for his border disaster,” Lee wrote of the move on social media. “I’m bringing business to a halt until we give the American people the trial promised by their Constitution.”

At Tuesday’s press conference, Lee again focused his remarks on the importance of moving forward with a trial, saying it was a necessity dictated by the Constitution.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said in a floor speech Monday that he wanted to “address this issue as expeditiously as possible,” and Lee and other Republicans expect he will attempt to table or dismiss the impeachment entirely.

“It’s not only expected but required under the Constitution that we should do this (trial),” Lee said. “Under Article 1, Section 3, Clause 6 of the Constitution, the Senate shall have power to try all impeachments. That means all impeachments.”

Romney: Senate shouldn’t ignore articles of impeachment

Romney was not present at the press conference. He previously told CNN he thought Mayorkas was “the wrong target” and that the Republican Party wanted to “underscore how bad the mess is at the border and point out the president’s responsibility for that.”

However, Politico reported Romney said he didn’t support a move to immediately table the articles of impeachment.

“I’d like there to be some discussion, some debate, whether in committee or with the entire Senate,” Romney said. “Or in some way, to make sure that we don’t begin a wiping aside of articles of impeachment that come from the House.”

Republicans: Senate needs to hold trial

Sen. Lee was joined at the press conference by a number of fellow Senate and House Republicans, including Rick Scott, R-Fla., Ted Cruz, R-Texas, John Kennedy, R-La., Roger Marshall, R-Kansas, Eric Schmitt, R-Mo., Ron Johnson, R-Wis., Rep. Mark Green, R-Tenn., Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., Rep. Ben Cline, R-Va., and others.

Cruz and others spoke about the issues that had led to the impeachment, particularly what Republicans have called Mayorkas’ failure to enforce border laws and encouragement of illegal immigration.

“The stakes of this impeachment are not some technical violation of law but rather an enormous and growing threat to the lives and safety of millions of Americans,” Cruz said. “Every year, under Joe Biden and Alejandro Mayorkas, we have seen millions of illegal aliens crossing into this country, Alejandro Mayorkas actively aiding and abetting the criminal invasion of this country.”

Cruz spoke of consequences, including the rising success of drug cartels and the increasing threat of human trafficking. He also referenced individual cases of crimes committed by immigrants in the United States illegally, such as the recent murders of Laken Riley and Jeremy Poou-Caceres.

“The Senate has a clear obligation under the Constitution and 200 years of precedent,” he said. “We need to hold a trial, we need to allow the managers to present the evidence.”

The Senate will convene Wednesday at 11 a.m. MDT to swear in jurors and clarify the next steps for the trial.