With the House-passed Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill stalled in the Senate, the issue is now back in the House’s court, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told reporters Tuesday.
“I think it’s clear we can’t go forward in the Senate, unless you all have heard something I haven’t and so the next move obviously is up to the House,” he said.
Senate Democrats blocked debate on the DHS funding bill — which would fund all of DHS but defund President Obama’s executive amnesty — three times last week.
“We’ve had a week on it. We’ve had three cloture votes, all of which have not succeeded. It’s clear we can’t get on the bill. We can’t offer amendments to the bill and I think it’d be pretty safe to say we’re stuck because of Democratic obstruction on the Senate side,” the Senate leader said.
But Michael Steel, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), says the matter is actually up to Senate Democrats, as there is no point for the House to move if Democrats will continue to filibuster.
“The House has passed a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, and block the President’s unilateral executive action on immigration,” Steel wrote in an email to Breitbart News. “Now, the pressure is on Senate Democrats who claim to oppose the President’s action, but are filibustering a bill to stop it. Until there is some signal from those Senate Democrats what would break their filibuster, there’s little point in additional House action.”
On the possibility of a short term continuing resolution, McConnell would not tip his hand.
“I’m not going to speculate about how this DHS funding issue may end. I can just tell you I think it’s clearly stuck in the Senate. We can’t get on it. We can’t offer amendments to it and the next step is obviously in the House,” he said.
DHS funding expires on Feb. 27.