Updated at 3:20 p.m. ET
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted today to fund the Department of Homeland Security through the end of the budget year — without any restrictions on immigration. The vote is a victory for President Obama as Republicans had wanted to strip funding for the president’s executive actions on immigration from the bill.
The measure, which passed 257-167, now heads to President Obama, who is expected to sign it.
Earlier today, in a closed-door meeting with rank-and-file Republicans, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, reportedly said the House is making the right decision, but he remained critical of Obama’s action to temporarily block the deportation of millions of immigrants in the U.S. illegally.
“I am as outraged and frustrated as you at the lawless and unconstitutional actions of this president,” Boehner told his caucus, according to a source who was in the room.
He also alluded to the split with Republicans in the Senate, which voted last week to pass the measure, providing the agency with full funding through Sept. 30.
“As you’ve heard me say a number of times, the House has done its job by passing legislation to fund DHS and block the president’s executive actions on immigration,” he said, according to the source. “Unfortunately, the fight was never won in the other chamber. Democrats stayed united and blocked our bill, and our Republican colleagues in the Senate never found a way to win this fight.”
Today’s House bill is in line with the Senate measure that passed last week.
In a dramatic vote late last week, the House voted to approve the department’s funding by one week. As Eyder and Bill reported:
“The passage capped a day of scrambling that saw a longer three-week stopgap shot down in the House, 203-224, NPR’s Juana Summers reports. More than 50 Republican upset with the deletion of a provision stripping funds from President Obama’s immigration moves joined the chamber’s Democrats, who at that time were still pushing for full funding through Sept. 30.
“This battle has been brewing in Congress for months, since President Obama issued a series of executive actions giving legal status to millions of undocumented immigrants.”
Today’s House vote brought together mostly Democrats and some Republicans. NPR’s Ron Elving has written about the heightened partisanship in Congress. He says Democratic and GOP lawmakers “no longer worry about pleasing anyone other than primary voters. If the primary voter goes with the incumbent, the incumbent is almost certain to go back to Washington.”