The House voted Thursday night to approve a border security deal that prevents a new government shutdown in a 300-128 vote.
The vote sets up President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse committee believes it has evidence Trump requested putting ally in charge of Cohen probe: report Vietnamese airline takes steps to open flights to US on sidelines of Trump-Kim summit Manafort’s attorneys say he should get less than 10 years in prison MORE to sign the legislation — and to declare a national emergency as a way of getting more federal funds for his wall on the Mexican border.
The House-passed legislation falls far short of Trump’s demand for $5.7 billion for a wall on the Mexican border, and Trump is likely to sign the legislation somewhat reluctantly.
Conservative pundits have lambasted the deal worked out by appropriators, and the House Freedom Caucus on Thursday night largely voted against it.
Fox News host Laura Ingraham said in a string of tweets that Trump “must not” sign the legislation. And a group of conservative members sent a letter to Trump urging him to take executive action should he feel the need to sign the bill.
Both parties lost votes from a sizable number of members from their respective parties who took issue with certain concessions in the bill, with 109 Republicans and 19 Democrats voting no.
The defectors were largely conservatives and progressive members. Only 87 Republicans voted yes.
Some conservatives were swayed to vote for the bill by Trump’s plan to declare a national emergency, including GOP Rep. Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzHouse passes border deal, setting up Trump to declare emergency Parkland parents create anti-gun violence Valentine’s Day candies: ‘Don’t shoot,’ ‘he’s gone’ House conservatives blast border deal, push Trump to use executive power MORE (Fla.).
Negotiators on both sides of the aisle said there were portions of the bill they weren’t pleased with, but felt they ultimately came out with a fair compromise providing victories for both sides.
“While this bill falls short of what I’d like to see, it will provide our Customs and Border Patrol and Immigration and customs enforcement agents the tools necessary to continue combatting the threat we face,” House Appropriations Ranking Member Kay GrangerNorvell (Kay) Kay GrangerSenate plots to avoid fall shutdown brawl On The Money: Trump declares emergency at border | Braces for legal fight | Move divides GOP | Trump signs border deal to avoid shutdown | Winners, losers from spending fight | US, China trade talks to resume next week How the border deal came together MORE (R-Texas) said on the floor ahead of the vote.
House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita LoweyNita Sue LoweyWhite House to propose using budget maneuver to prevent defense spending cuts Senate plots to avoid fall shutdown brawl On The Money: Trump declares emergency at border | Braces for legal fight | Move divides GOP | Trump signs border deal to avoid shutdown | Winners, losers from spending fight | US, China trade talks to resume next week MORE (D-N.Y.) had similar sentiments, saying they managed to “put politics aside and put the American people first.”
But not all appropriators were satisfied with the outcome of the agreement. Rep. Tom GravesJohn (Tom) Thomas GravesHouse passes border deal, setting up Trump to declare emergency Lawmakers introduce bill to fund government, prevent shutdown The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by the American Academy of HIV Medicine – Next 24 hours critical for stalled funding talks MORE (R-Ga.) said he had hoped for additional funding for the wall, adding he was dissatisfied with time allotted for members to review what was in the 1,000-plus page bill.
“I think it shows the inadequacy of this bill,” he told The Hill of the need to declare a national emergency.
The legislation, which was released just before midnight on Wednesday, includes funding for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including $1.375 billion to build 55 miles of barrier in the Rio Grande Valley.
Congress passed the measure just one day before current funding was set to expire at midnight. Uncertainty over whether Trump would sign the bill lasted through early-afternoon, with members expressing concern they were at risk of a second partial government shutdown in two months.
The Senate passed the legislation in an 83-16 vote Thursday afternoon, shortly after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHouse to push back at Trump on border Democrats block abortion bill in Senate Overnight Energy: Climate protesters storm McConnell’s office | Center-right group says Green New Deal could cost trillion | Dire warnings from new climate studies MORE (R-Ky.) announced he had spoken to the president who was willing to support the measure. He also announced his support for Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency in order to build a border barrier.
While Trump’s vow to declare a national emergency is being welcomed by conservatives, members on both sides of the aisle expressed concerns it could set a bad precedent.
“Declaring a national emergency would be a lawless act, a gross abuse of the power of the presidency and a desperate attempt to distract from the fact that President Trump broke his core promise to have Mexico pay for his wall,” Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D’Alesandro PelosiHouse to push back at Trump on border Governors bullish on infrastructure after Trump talks Pelosi attends signing of New York’s new ‘red flag’ gun control bill MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerBrennan fires back at ‘selfish’ Trump over Harry Reid criticism Trump rips Harry Reid for ‘failed career’ after ex-Dem leader slams him in interview Harry Reid: ‘I don’t see anything’ Trump is doing right MORE (D-N.Y.) said in a joint statement.
“It is yet another demonstration of President Trump’s naked contempt for the rule of law. This is not an emergency, and the president’s fearmongering doesn’t make it one.”
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthySteve King says he will run again in 2020: ‘I have nothing to apologize for’ Steve King spins GOP punishment into political weapon Steve King asks for Congressional Record correction over white supremacist quote MORE (R-Calif.) said he supports Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency.
“We face a humanitarian and national security crisis at the border that must be addressed and the President’s declaration is merely a statement of fact. With the declaration and other legal authorities, the President has access to important tools to take the steps necessary to secure the border.”
The bill will keep the government funded through Sept. 30.
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