The House of Representatives has finally passed a full year’s funding for the Department of Homeland Security by way of a clean bill devoid of immigration attachments, squashing the hopes of conservative Republicans who had been pinning their hopes on rolling back President Obama’s executive action on immigration reform.
The end of the often bitter debate has raised new concerns over the ability of John Boehner, the speaker of the House of Representatives, to cope with argumentative conservatives, who last week brought the Department of Homeland Security to within a few hours of partially shutting down. Boehner was left with little choice if he wished to avoid this scenario, with Democrats in the Senate repeatedly quashing attempts to pass a funding bill that came with immigration reform-blocking attachments.
“It’s time to move forward and stop playing these silly games,” says moderate Republican Charlie Dent, a representative from Pennsylvania. “Let’s prove to the American people that we’re serious about protecting this homeland and that we have the capacity to govern.” A number of other Republican Party members have said that they would be better served by challenging Obama’s executive action in the courts. There remain a number of conservatives who are disappointed and angry by the House’s ultimate capitulation. Arizona Republican representative Matt Salmon called Tuesday “a sad day”, wondering: “If we’re not going to fight now, when are we going to fight?”