GOP senator: Media backing Dems in Homeland Security fight

Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonOvernight Health Care: Trump officials making changes to drug pricing proposal | House panel advances flavored e-cig ban | Senators press FDA tobacco chief on vaping ban Why Republicans are afraid to call a key witness in the impeachment inquiry Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight MORE (R-Wis.) is criticizing the “mainstream media” for pushing blame for a potential Department of Homeland Security shutdown onto the GOP.

“Let’s face it, the mainstream media is not exactly on Republicans’ side, so they always blame us,” he said during an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

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“But in this case, I think we don’t shoulder the blame here, because it’s President Obama that picked this fight; it’s Democrats in the Senate that are blocking a bill on the floor of the Senate.”

Republicans and Democrats have spent the last few weeks fighting over how to fund the agency. Republicans had wanted to use the funding bill as a vehicle to defund Obama’s immigration actions, but Senate Democrats used the filibuster to block those attempts.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Graham: Senate trial 'must expose the whistleblower' Graham says Schiff should be a witness in Trump impeachment trial MORE (R-Ky.) pivoted toward separating the immigration actions from the agency’s funding on Monday night after another failed Senate vote. The Senate will now vote on a stand-alone measure that would eliminate the president’s 2014 programs and might vote on a “clean” funding bill after that. 

Johnson and other conservatives were emboldened by a court decision last week that called for a delay of those immigration programs until courts could decide whether they are legal. He said that the ruling “certainly leant credence to the argument that” Obama’s actions overstepped the Constitution and called for Democrats to only fund the parts of the agency that both parties agree on.