Sec. Mayorkas Wants to Build Something, So He Waives 26 Laws - Wish You and I Could Cut Through Red Tape So Easily

Craig Bannister | October 6, 2023
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While American citizens and businesses are being crushed and crippled by an ever-growing mountain of burdensome, complex and costly laws, restrictions and requirements, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas cleared the way for his latest project by waiving 26 laws with the stroke of a pen.

Now that Democrat officials in so-called “sanctuary cities” are feeling the sting of illegal immigration in their domains, Sec. Mayorkas has decided it’s finally time to resume building former President Donald Trump’s border wall.

While building the border wall is and essential step in addressing the raging border crisis, the average citizen or business owner must wade through, decipher and navigate myriad laws and regulations preventing or restricting him from building anything, from a deck for his house to an addition to his business.

Meanwhile, Congress has given the Department of Homeland Security secretary the power to simply waive any pesky laws that might be in his way.

Sec. Mayorkas did just that on Thursday, when he issued a statement announcing the resumption of the desperately-needed border wall construction in Texas, which is being overwhelmed by a relentless surge of illegal aliens.

As Mayorkas explains, his power to waive laws is granted by the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, as amended (“IIRIRA”):

“[I]n section 102(c) of IIRIRA, Congress granted to the Secretary of Homeland Security the authority to waive all legal requirements that I, in my sole discretion, determine necessary to ensure the expeditious construction of barriers and roads authorized by section 102 of IIRIRA.”

If only you and I could cut through bureaucratic red tape so easily…

“I have determined that it is necessary that I exercise the authority that is vested in me by section 102(c) of IIRIRA,” Sec. Mayorkas says:

“[P]ursuant to section 102(c) of IIRIRA, I hereby waive in their entirety…all of the following statutes, including all federal, state, or other laws, regulations, and legal requirements of, deriving from, or related to the subject of, the following statutes.”

In all, Mayorkas waived 26 laws by fiat. About half of them have to do with the either the environment or wildlife – including one apparent “treaty” we’ve forged with migratory birds:

  1. The National Environmental Policy Act (Pub. L. 91–190, 83 Stat. 852 (Jan. 1, 1970) (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.));
  2. the Endangered Species Act (Pub. L. 93–205, 87 Stat. 884 (Dec. 28, 1973) (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.));
  3. the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (commonly referred to as the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.));
  4. the National Historic Preservation Act (Pub. L. 89–665, 80 Stat. 915 (Oct. 15, 1966), as amended, repealed, or replaced by Public Law 113–287, 128 Stat. 3094 (Dec. 19, 2014) (formerly codified at 16 U.S.C. 470 et seq., now codified at 54 U.S.C. 100101 note and 54 U.S.C. 300101 et seq.));
  5. the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 703 et seq.);
  6. the Migratory Bird Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 715 et seq.);
  7. the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.);
  8. the Archeological Resources Protection Act (Pub. L. 96–95, 93 Stat. 721 (Oct. 31, 1979) (16 U.S.C. 470aa et seq.));
  9. the Paleontological Resources Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470aaa et seq.);
  10. the Safe Drinking Water Act (42 U.S.C. 300f et seq.);
  11. the Noise Control Act (42 U.S.C. 4901 et seq.);
  12. the Solid Waste Disposal Act, as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.);
  13. the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (42 U.S.C. 9601 et seq.);
  14. the Archaeological and Historic Preservation Act (Pub. L. 86–523, 74 Stat. 220 (June 27, 1960) as amended, repealed, or replaced by Public Law 113–287, 128 Stat. 3094 (Dec. 19, 2014) (formerly codified at 16 U.S.C. 469 et seq., now codified at 54 U.S.C. 312502 et seq.));
  15. the Antiquities Act (formerly codified at 16 U.S.C. 431 et seq., now codified 54 U.S.C. 320301 et seq.);
  16. the Historic Sites, Buildings, and Antiquities Act (formerly codified at 16 U.S.C. 461 et seq., now codified at 54 U.S.C. 3201–320303 & 320101–320106);
  17. the Farmland Protection Policy Act (7 U.S.C. 4201 et seq.);
  18. the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act (Pub. L. 89–669, 80 Stat. 926 (Oct. 15, 1966) (16 U.S.C. 668dd-668ee));
  19. National Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (Pub. L. 84–1024, 70 Stat. 1119 (Aug. 8, 1956) (16 U.S.C. 742a, et seq.));
  20. the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (Pub. L. 73–121, 48 Stat. 401 (March 10, 1934) (16 U.S.C. 661 et seq.));
  21. the National Trails System Act (16 U.S.C. 1241 et seq.);
  22. the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 551 et seq.);
  23. the Eagle Protection Act (16 U.S.C. 668 et seq.);
  24. the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (25 U.S.C. 3001 et seq.);
  25. the American Indian Religious Freedom Act (42 U.S.C. 1996);
  26. and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (Pub. L. 94–579, 90 Stat. 2743 (Oct. 21, 1976) (43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.)).


Waiving these laws is sure to infuriate Mayorkas’ liberal cohorts, especially illegal immigration advocates and environmental-ecological activists.

And, Mayorkas says he may not be done yet:

“I reserve the authority to execute further waivers from time to time as I may determine to be necessary under section 102 of IIRIRA.”

Must be nice.