Providing for Consideration of H.R. 644, Fighting Hunger Incentive Act of 2015, and Providing for Consideration of H.R. 636, America’s Small Business Tax Relief Act of 2015by Representative Lucille Roybal-Allard
Posted on 2015-02-12
ROYBAL-ALLARD. Mr. Speaker, I, too, rise to urge my colleagues to
defeat the previous question on the rule so it can be amended to make
in order House consideration of H.R. 861, the clean, bipartisan
Homeland Security Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2015.
As we have been reminded by previous speakers, today is February 12, 135 days into fiscal year 2015, and there are only 16 days remaining until the current CR expires. Of these days, the House is scheduled to be in session only 5. If some of my colleagues have a sense of deja vu when they hear that, I [[Page H998]] can sympathize. I get the same feeling when I wake up each morning and find that Congress is still spinning its wheels on a full-year funding bill for the Department of Homeland Security.
I know some of my colleagues believe the onus to act now lies with the Senate, as we have heard. I agree, the Senate should act. While it has had multiple failed attempts to bring up the House bill containing the poison pill riders, the Senate Republican leadership has not tried to bring up the clean, bipartisan funding bill.
I feel confident that a majority of the Senate would support the bill without the poison pill riders added to the House on the floor. There is only one way to find out.
The real question is why isn't the House Republican leadership willing to bring the clean Homeland Security bill for a vote? Why wait? Why not take the initiative and make H.R. 861 in order today? We can quickly resolve the funding dilemma facing the Department of Homeland Security, and the House could then work its will on immigration policy and border security by debating the legislation reported to the House by the authorizing committees. That is the way our process was intended to work by our framers.
The fact is, Mr. Speaker, the clean full-year DHS funding bill was negotiated in good faith on a bicameral, bipartisan basis, and it addresses the most pressing needs of the Department to protect this country from harm. The President would sign that bill today, and we should send it to him.
I urge my colleagues to put the safety of our country first and defeat the previous question to make in order the consideration of H.R. 861, the clean Homeland Security funding bill.