Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is pressing GOP leaders to put a homeland security funding bill on the floor that is free of controversial immigration measures.
The Nevada Democrat, a large bandage over his injured right eye and a dark bruise just below after a recent exercise accident, wants the chamber to vote on a “clean” Department of Homeland Security funding bill.
“All we have to do is look around the world: cyber attacks, North Korea, the deaths in Belgium, in France,” Reid told reporters during his first post-injury press conference. “And we now are facing the question here in the United States as to whether we’re going to fund homeland security? I just think is so out of line.
“We should put a bill on the president’s desk as soon as possible that’s clean,” Reid said. “We don’t need any riders on it. We need to get it done now.
House members earlier this month easily approved a $39.7 billion DHS appropriations bill that would span the remainder of the fiscal year.
But they also tacked on amendments targeting President Obama’s recent immigration action.
The move immediately drew the ire of Senate Democrats, including the handful of moderates needed to reach the necessary 60-vote threshold. Even Republican members who say they could vote for the bill say it would not get the necessary 60 votes to shut off debate.
The House GOP-crafted bill also has received a veto threat from the White House.
The lower chamber’s DHS-funding measure contains billions for defense sector-supplied Coast Guard hardware, like National Security Cutter ships, HC-130J aircraft acquisitions and maintenance, H-60 helicopter re-manufacturing, and other programs.