Chris Magnus, Top Border Official, Says He Was Asked to Resign

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The Border Patrol union, which represents about 90 percent of agents eligible to belong, has also called for Mr. Mayorkas to be impeached. The union president, Brandon Judd, said members support Mr. Magnus’s removal as well.

In 2021, Mr. Biden tapped Mr. Magnus, a former police chief with a reputation for bringing reform and culture changes, to run Customs and Border Protection, one of the largest law enforcement agencies in the world with more than 60,000 employees. He is the first openly gay commissioner of the agency.

The Los Angeles Times first reported that Mr. Magnus had been asked to resign.

A report by Democrats on the House Oversight and Reform Committee in October last year found that Customs and Border Protection has tended to dole out lighter discipline to reprimanded agents than what was recommended by its discipline review board. The Border Patrol, in particular, has come under fire for a culture in which discrimination and mistreatment of migrants have persisted.

Multiple administrations have tried to enforce more accountability onto the agency and add layers of oversight.

But when Mr. Magnus took the helm of Customs and Border Protection eight months after he was nominated, the agency was in the midst of trying to manage a spike in illegal migration at the southwestern border during the pandemic, which posed overwhelming operational challenges for border officials. Campaign promises to repeal the Trump administration’s restrictive immigration policies and rein in Border Patrol agents appeared to evaporate.

Border Patrol agents, who are the first line of defense at the country’s international borders, are among the department’s most outspoken critics of Mr. Mayorkas’s and the Biden administration’s policies. Mr. Magnus said policies he has worked to advance have been weighed against how much they would damage the already low morale at the agency.

Last month, a Politico article described a pattern of a lack of engagement on Mr. Magnus’s part, citing anonymous administration officials. They said he missed key meetings or fell asleep during them, and was too focused on overhauling the Border Patrol. Mr. Magnus disclosed to Politico that he has multiple sclerosis, but he has pushed back against accusations that he is not engaged. He said he had previously told senior officials at the department about his condition but that it was not widely known.

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