Saturday, February 14, 2015

Congressional Republicans at Odds Over Homeland Security Funding Bill

GOP Lawmakers in Both Chambers Seek to Shift Burden of Breaking Stalemate With Democrats
House and Senate Republicans sought Tuesday to shift responsibility to the other chamber to break an ongoing stalemate with Democrats over immigration policy, displaying intraparty tensions just weeks after assuming full control of Congress.
The fight could jeopardize funding for the Department of Homeland Security, which expires in less than three weeks. Republicans had hoped to use a bill extending the agency’s funding to thwart President Barack Obama ’s executive action giving millions of illegal immigrants new protections, but their effort has been blocked by Senate Democrats.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said Tuesday a bill passed by the House last month had stalled in the Senate. The burden to find a way forward, he said, falls back to the House.
“It’s clearly stuck in the Senate,” said Mr. McConnell, referring to the House bill and echoing comments by other Senate Republicans. “The next step is obviously up to the House.”
... But House Republicans said they had done their job and that the Senate has yet to do its. House GOP lawmakers said they feel no responsibility to bring forward another bill until the Senate has passed whatever measure it can approve.
“The House has passed a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, and block the president’s unilateral executive action on immigration,” Michael Steel, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) said Tuesday. Until Democrats signal what they would let advance in the Senate, “there’s little point in additional House action,” Mr. Steel said. ...
Read the full story HERE.

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