Speaker John BoehnerJohn BoehnerWounded Ryan faces new battle Bottom Line Trump, GOP fumble chance to govern MORE (R-Ohio) said Sunday that he is “certainly” willing to let federal funding for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) expire this month if a congressional standoff that is threatening the agency’s appropriation continues.
Asking by “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace on Sunday if he is willing to let DHS shut down over the immigration fight, BoehnerJohn BoehnerWounded Ryan faces new battle Bottom Line Trump, GOP fumble chance to govern MORE replied, “Certainly.
“The House has done its job under the Constitution,” he said. “It's time for the Senate to do their job.”
DHS funding was left out of a broader appropriations measure that was approved in December because conservatives were hoping to use the DHS deadline to extract concessions from Obama on immigration. DHS, which includes the Transportation Security Administration, will partially shut down and stop paying thousands of employees on Feb. 28 unless Congress agrees on a way to fund it.
Senate Republicans have argued that they are being put in a bind by their counterparts in the House because they do not have a filibuster-proof majority in the upper chamber.
Boehner moved Sunday to shift blame for a potential DHS shutdown to Democrats in the Senate, who are standing firm against GOP efforts to undo Obama’s immigration executive action.
“Senate Democrats are the ones putting us in this precarious position,” he said. “It's up to Senate Democrats to get their act together.”
Senate Democrats rejected Boehner’s claim after the Sunday interview.
“When Speaker Boehner tied immigration to DHS funding he knew exactly what he was doing; saying unless I get my way, I’m going to shut down a large part of the government,” Sen. Chuck SchumerCharles SchumerThe real reason why ObamaCare repeal failed Schumer confronts wealthy Trump supporter in restaurant: report Pelosi, more Dems call for Nunes to step aside MORE (D-N.Y.) said in a statement. “To now blame Democrats when members of his own party, conservative leaders and others have all asked him to back off this game of chicken is disingenuous at best.”
“There is only one thing that’s certain – if Speaker Boehner persists in following Ted CruzTed CruzWounded Ryan faces new battle The mystery of Ivanka Trump Conservatism's worst enemy? The Freedom Caucus. MORE on this path just has he did in 2013, he will be responsible for shutting down a large part of the government, the American people will perceive it that way, and his party and the country will suffer for it.”