Steve King On DHS Funding Fight: Senate Should Muster Grit To Defend Constitution, Or Go Home

AP Photo
AP Photo

Senators who are not willing to fight against President Obama’s “unconstitutional” executive amnesty ought to consider going home, Rep. Steve King (R-IA) says.

“I’ve listened to some senators over there, Republican senators whine about being blamed [for a Department of Homeland Security shutdown],” King said in an interview with Breitbart News Thursday afternoon.

“This a constitutional issue and they all took the same oath to the Constitution that we did. And there is no clause in that oath that says ‘support and defend the Constitution, unless you might get blamed for inconveniencing some people,’” he continued.

Congress is facing a Friday midnight deadline to fund DHS or the department would shut down. Last month, the House passed a DHS funding bill that also blocks President Obama’s executive amnesty. Senate Democrats spent much of the month of February filibustering the House-passed bill.

Unable to proceed on the House-passed bill, earlier this week Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) moved to have a vote on a DHS bill free of the immigration provisions, succumbing to the demands of Democrats.

While Senate Republican leadership caved, King said that he has been supportive of House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-OH) repeated assertions that the House has acted to fund the department and that the Senate needs to do its job.

The Iowa lawmaker noted that the strategy of tying the executive amnesty fight to DHS funding was devised by leadership.

“It’s really going to come up to leadership. This is leadership’s strategy,” he said. “Remember that a lot of us wanted us to cut the funding [for executive amnesty] in the entire omnibus bill [last December]. We wanted it to be higher stakes than it is now. It is leadership’s strategy to set aside DHS appropriations and defund the lawlessness there. So this is the strategy we have. I want it to work, its up to leadership.”

King added that a short-term funding mechanism to prevent a shutdown and allow more time for the chambers to figure out a solution would also be unacceptable for Constitutional conservatives.

“This day have been coming along for a long time now and so a short term CR that funds the president’s lawlessness, what it does is it puts people on record funding unconstitutional acts. They sacrifice their principle in order to buy time,” King said. “If we’re going to stand on principle we need to stand on principle now.”

He added that those Senators who cannot muster the courage to fight for the Constitution should reconsider their positions.

“The constitutional conservatives in this Congress will say, ‘we’re not going to fund unconstitutional lawlessness, Senate figure it out, if you don’t have enough grit to defend the Constitution maybe you ought to think about going home,’” he said.


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