Should Mayorkas be approved by the Senate, he almost certainly would lead the department until a permanent replacement for Napolitano is chosen. His promotion also would create a new leadership vacancy in a department already facing a leadership vacuum. With Napolitano's departure, 15 of the department's 45 top positions will either be filled with an acting official or be vacant altogether.
Associated Press writer Stephen Braun contributed to this report.
Follow Alicia A. Caldwell on Twitter at www.twitter.com/acaldwellap
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.