Homeland Security funding deal elusive

Published 9:20 am Monday, March 2, 2015

WASHINGTON — With a partial shutdown of the Homeland Security Department looming, House Speaker John Boehner is demanding negotiations with Democrats on a funding bill that rolls back President Barack Obama’s immigration policies. Senate Democrats are unwilling to even consider such a step.

The Senate has scheduled a procedural vote Monday and Democrats are expected to block an attempt to establish negotiations with the House on the legislation.

Congress late Friday cleared a one-week extension for the department after 52 House conservatives defied their leadership and helped scuttle legislation that would have given the agency a three-week reprieve.

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House Republican leaders on Sunday challenged Democrats to begin negotiations on funding for the Homeland Security Department and Obama’s unilateral actions on immigration. But even some Republicans said the party should simply surrender and give the agency money without conditions.

Republicans and Democrats have not found common ground.

“We want to get a conference with the Senate. Now, they’ve made clear that they don’t want to go to conference. But they’re going to have a vote. If they vote, in fact, not to get a conference, this bill may be coming back to the House,” Boehner said Sunday on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”