Congress

In A Bind, Republicans Offer Vote On Homeland Security Bill

Feb 24, 2015
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WASHINGTON  — A partial agency shutdown looming, Senate Republicans offered Tuesday to permit a vote on Homeland Security funding legislation stripped of immigration provisions backed by conservatives but strongly opposed by President Barack Obama and fellow Democrats.

“We could have that vote very quickly,” Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said as his party struggled to escape a political predicament of their own making involving an agency with major anti-terrorism responsibilities.

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While comprehensive immigration reform continues to go fallow, millions already in the country and even more outside the U.S. hope to become citizens. 

This post was updated at 11 p.m. ET.

In an attempt to weigh in on an immigration issue before Congress leaves Washington for a five-week break, the House has voted 223-189 to approve a $694 million emergency funding bill. The Republican-backed legislation is a response to the rising number of minors who have crossed the U.S. border unaccompanied and without going through the necessary legal steps.

U.S. Government

Immigration reform goes to the House floor this week, and San Antonio Congressman Joaquín Castro has introduced an amendment to the next military budget bill that would give students with Deferred Action Childhood Arrival (DACA) status the same rights given to many international students who apply to military academies.

San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro joined former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour this week to kick off the Civil Rights Summit in Austin and to discuss the topic of immigration as a civil rights issue.   

Castro told the crowd that a reform of the United States immigration system will enhance civil rights by bringing people out of the shadows, creating situations where immigrants aren’t afraid to report crimes, send their kids to school and get the care they need for their families.

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