Democrats quickly shot down the latest Republican attempt to weasel out of their government shutdown by stopping the bills that would have partially funded veterans, national parks, and DC.
In an act of desperation, House Republicans jumped on an idea by Sen. Ted Cruz to make the Democrats look bad by passing bills that would fund veterans’ programs, national parks, and the District of Columbia. What Cruz floated wasn’t a strategic path victory, it was a was a way out. Sen. Cruz pushed his knuckle headed strategy in the media, “We should fund national parks and keep them open right now, today,” Cruz told reporters Tuesday. “And we saw yesterday, that can happen quickly. It doesn’t take weeks or even days, within hours, if Congress wants to, we can fund every single one of the priorities the president laid out yesterday, we can fund clean CRs if Harry Reid and the Democrats don’t object. That is what I hope we will do.”
House Republicans tried to corner Democrats into going on the record against funding for popular programs by suspending the rules and requiring a two thirds vote for passage. House Democrats quickly saw that the votes were attempt by Republicans to get out of the corner that they had painted themselves into, and refused to play along. The veterans affairs funding bill failed 264-164. The national parks bill failed 252-176. The bill to fund the District of Columbia failed 265-163.
During the debate on the three bills, House Democrats made it clear that they were well aware of what the Republicans were trying to do. Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi called out the hypocrisy of Republicans proposing a funding bill that actually cuts veterans’ funding, “So, let’s not leave our veterans behind by leaving their children, their grandchildren, [and] their families – what they need. And just to go into it, this bill is billions of dollars less than what over 420 Members in this House [of Representatives] passed in June. We are all there for our veterans. There is no question about that, as our distinguished Whip, Mr. Hoyer said. Nobody questions the commitment that we all have, [or] the gratitude that we have, the appreciation, the pedestal that we have our veterans at. But we leave them behind when we leave behind all that they fought for. And we leave them behind when we put a bill on the floor that is billions of dollars less than we all came together to support just a few months ago. Don’t exploit them. Don’t use them. We owe them too much. On the battlefield, we leave no soldier behind, and when they come home, we leave no Veteran behind – and all that they know and love.”
House Republicans are drowning in their own government shutdown, and Democrats are content to stand aside and watch them sink. The only life preserver that Republicans have is pass the clean CR.
Democrats are not coming to the rescue.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association