Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is on to Speaker John Boehner and the Republican Party’s plans to use the Department of Homeland Security as a hostage for their political agenda, even after the horrific act of terrorism in Paris has brought national security back to the forefront of Americans’ minds. Pelosi’s office issued a statement Thursday evening calling it out:
Speaker Boehner and Republicans continue to use the broken immigration system, the Department of Homeland Security and our national security as a political ploy - perpetuating false propaganda about enforcing our immigration laws. Rather than building upon the President’s move and ensuring our nation’s safety is uncompromised, see what they prefer to do:
[Speaker Boehner] assured members that his plan to challenge Obama has not changed, even in the wake of a terrorist attack on Paris that’s put national security issues back on the front page. [MSNBC, 1/8]
Department of Homeland Security is only funded through Feb. 27 - Republicans want to use the deadline as leverage to block the immigration spending. [Fox News, 1/8]
House Speaker John Boehner is promising a fight on immigration that has the potential to shut down the Department of Homeland Security. [TPM, 1/8]
Indeed, Speaker Boehner (R-OH) wouldn’t rule out using the Department of Homeland Security as a hostage for the Republican agenda:
Boehner on DHS funding: “I don’t believe the funding for the Department is, in fact, at risk.” But stresses need for exec action response
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) January 8, 2015
Yesterday I pointed out that Republicans were already on defense over their refusal to fund the DHS past February 27th:
In the wake of the Paris magazine attacks that have reportedly killed 12 people including journalists and police, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is backing away from Republican threats to defund Homeland Security as their way to defeat President Obama’s executive actions on immigration reform.
Republicans only passed short term funding for the DHS in December, as they were planning to defund the agency in order to stop Obama from acting on his executive privilege with actions on immigration. Then they “discovered” that they don’t have the authority to do so, since the agency which will carry out Obama’s immigration executive orders is funded on fees and not through Congressional appropriations, but this didn’t stop them from introducing a show bill Tuesday that ignores this fact.
Republicans refuse to say that they will fund the DHS and won’t hold it hostage. There is only one reason why they haven’t funded it, and that is to use our national security as leverage in order to get what they want. The fact that they haven’t said that they will not do this, even in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris, is troubling.
Republicans have already risked our economy and the safety of our embassy personnel in order to satisfy their petulant need for obstruction. Will they sacrifice our national security too?
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.