Having insufficient votes for passage earlier today, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, pulled from floor consideration H.R. 5230, the supplemental spending for the border surge crisis. Boehner thereafter held an emergency meeting of the House Republican Conference to round up more votes. The House continued to debate the legislation but adjourned for the day. Debate on the bill will resume just after 10 a.m. on Friday.
House Republican leaders issued this statement after pulling the bill from the floor:
“This situation shows the intense concern within our conference – and among the American people – about the need to ensure the security of our borders and the president’s refusal to faithfully execute our laws. There are numerous steps the president can and should be taking right now, without the need for congressional action, to secure our borders and ensure these children are returned swiftly and safely to their countries. For the past month, the House has been engaged in intensive efforts to pass legislation that would compel the president to do his job and ensure it can be done as quickly and compassionately as possible. Through an inclusive process, a border bill was built by listening to members and the American people that has the support not just of a majority of the majority in the House, but most of the House Republican Conference. We will continue to work on solutions to the border crisis and other challenges facing our country.”
Boehner had crafted a last-minute plan to lure conservative votes that would have allowed a subsequent vote on a watered down version of Rep. Marsha Blackburn’s (R-Tenn.) H.R. 5160 after passage of the spending bill. H.R. 5160 defunds the renewal of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and prevent President Obama from granting work permits to additional illegal aliens. Boehner’s legislation left a loophole for granting illegal aliens “parole” -- something illegal alien groups have advocated.-- so Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, and other objected to the gambit. “The Blackburn language that I introduced before the Rules Committee is not the same language that's coming before the floor,” said King.
A number of Republicans objected to the passage of any bill because Obama has the ability to deport surge aliens now without additional authority or funds. They say Obama is hiding behind the 2008 human trafficking law which does not apply to the vast majority of surge aliens. All but a handful of Democrats opposed H.R. 5230 because it changed that 2008 law and provided Obama insufficient funds for handling the crisis as he had planned.
Updated: Thu, Aug 14th 2014 @ 2:20pm EDT