Eleventh-hour solution to DHS immigration funding crisis possible

Immigration ReformAn 11th hour solution to the issue of funding for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which is set to expire today, may have been reached. Senate Democrats have reportedly accepted the Republicans’ plans to continue financing the DHS by presenting a bill minus the amendments intended to block President Obama’s executive action on immigration reform.

Harry Reid, the Senate minority leader, confirmed on Wednesday that Democrats in the Senate had come to an agreement with members of the Republican Party, including Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, on passing a funding bill for the Department of Homeland Security minus the contentious amendments to block immigration reform. With funding set to expire today, the department might otherwise face a shutdown.

“It’s an important step to be able to send to the House of Representatives a bill that funds the Department of Homeland Security,” Reid told reporters in the wake of a private session. “We look forward to working with our Republican colleagues in the next 24 hours to get this done. All eyes now shift to the House of Representatives as soon as we pass our clean funding bill.”

Capitol Hill has been at gridlock status over the executive action taken by President Obama in November to protect millions of undocumented immigrants from the threat of deportation and to grant work permits. Any clean DHS funding bill would nonetheless have to be passed by the House, which is controlled by the Republicans.