House Republicans took aim at President Barack Obama's immigration policy Friday with a budget proposal that would fund the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees border checkpoints, but block the White House's recent executive action benefiting some illegal immigrants. The plan, which is scheduled to be voted on by the House next week, is unlikely to get approval from the more moderate Senate.
The funding measure is the latest message of discontent from House Republicans directed at the White House regarding Obama's recent immigration reform proposals that seek to extend benefits to 5 million immigrants without legal status. Last year, Republicans and Democrats approved a federal budget that funded the Department of Homeland Security only through February instead of through the fiscal year because GOP leaders said they were unhappy with Obama's executive actions on immigration.
“The House will soon take action aimed at stopping the president’s unilateral action when it comes to immigration,” Speaker John Boehner of Ohio said, according to the New York Times. “I said we’d fight it tooth and nail when we had new majorities in the House and Senate, and I meant it.”
But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said lawmakers would not play politics with the Department of Homeland Security's purse. “At the end of the day, we’re going to fund the department,” he said Wednesday. Obama has threatened to veto any legislation seeking to undermine his immigration action.
Obama unveiled his latest immigration proposal in November. He previously had extended legal benefits to young immigrants who illegally entered the country as children. The latest measure is aimed at helping their parents and other immigrants not covered by earlier policies.
The House budget proposal would not fund any of those measures, according to Politico. Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Ala., helped craft the funding plan.