Clock ticking on DHS funding

WASHINGTON D.C. (CNN) – Washington is a little more than two days away from pulling funding for the department of homeland security because of an impasse over the bill being tied to some of president Obama’s controversial executive actions on immigration.

With little movement on Capitol Hill, Washington is stuck and a partial shutdown of DHS is on the horizon.  Urgency emerges on Capitol Hill, but a path forward does not.

On Wednesday Speaker of the House John Boehner says he won’t budge, “So until the senate does something, we are in a wait-and-see mode.”

This comes after a key concession was made by his counterpart in the senate Tuesday.

Republican senate majority leader Mitch McConnell offered to hold a vote on a clean bill to fund DHS through September and a separate vote to stop the president’s executive actions on immigration, but that is a hard sell among conservative house republicans.

Many will only vote for a funding bill if it’s linked with immigration, “I am not going to vote for any legislation, whether long term or short term, that supports illegal and unconstitutional conduct,” said Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama.

Meanwhile time is running out to avoid a partial shutdown of the agency responsible for protecting the homeland.

If no deal is passed before midnight Friday, around 200,000 essential DHS employees would work without pay.  Workers from TSA, coast guard, border patrol, secret service would be impacted and local economies/business could also suffer.

Jeh Johnson, Homeland Security Secretary said, “There are concrete, dramatic consequences for the homeland security of this nation if we allow the funding of the department to lapse.”

Those consequences become reality in a matter of days unless a deal is reached.

On Wednesday afternoon, the senate voted 98-2 to open debate on a bill that would fund the department of homeland security through September.  If it passes, that clean spending bill would move to the house.

Copyright CNN 2015

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