John Thune: We’re not going to shut down Homeland Security in February over executive amnesty

posted at 2:31 pm on January 5, 2015 by Allahpundit

In that case, I have no idea what the point of the “cromnibus” was. Remember that? That was Boehner’s compromise with Obama and Reid on spending that passed last month. It had two parts, one of which would fund the federal government except for Homeland Security through most of next year and the other of which would fund Homeland Security itself only through part of February. That was a concession to conservative anger over O’s executive amnesty. If Obama doesn’t suspend his amnesty before then, the theory went, the new GOP Congress will refuse to pass new funding for DHS next month, forcing a shutdown of (non-essential) personnel in that department and supposedly stopping Obama’s amnesty cold. Now here’s Thune saying that Congress needs to use the power of the purse to rein Obama in … while also insisting that they won’t shut down DHS after all, which I guess means the “cromnibus” was a big fat lie. What power does the purse have if you’re not willing to use it here?

No surprise, though. The name of the game for McConnell and his deputies, eyeing 2016, is to not do anything “scary” that might give swing voters jitters about electing a Republican president.

“I don’t want the American people to think that if they add a Republican president to a Republican Congress, that’s going to be a scary outcome. I want the American people to be comfortable with the fact that the Republican House and Senate is a responsible, right-of-center, governing majority,” the Kentucky Republican said in a broad interview just before Christmas in his Capitol office…

“There would be nothing frightening about adding a Republican president to that governing majority,” McConnell said, explaining how he wants voters to view the party on the eve of the 2016 election. “I think that’s the single best thing we can do, is to not mess up the playing field, if you will, for whoever the nominee ultimately is.”

No sudden moves. Here’s Roger Wicker, another man who’s thinking hard about 2016 as the new chairman of the NRSC, discussing immigration on CNN yesterday:

BASH: Right but let’s just talk politics. He did it. He did what he did on executive — with his executive action because the Congress didn’t move. So — WICKER: Well —

BASH: But given your job to keep Republicans in control, and obviously I’m guessing you want a Republican in the White House, do you need to move forward on this issue once and for all?

WICKER: I think the first thing we’ll do is a strong border security bill. And frankly, that’s why I think Speaker Boehner didn’t take it up in the House last term is because he didn’t have confidence that the administration would actually enforce the border security part of it. But I think once we do that, we will have a debate in this term of Congress about what to do with those children who came through no decision of their own and what’s the best way to handle that issue. I think we’ll have that debate.

Bash brought up executive amnesty. Nothing here from Wicker about trying to block it.

Three possibilities on Thune’s comments, then. One: Maybe McConnell’s concluded that the “no sudden moves” strategy, culminating in a GOP White House win, is the only foolproof way to get rid of executive amnesty. If the new Republican Senate majority goes to war with O to try to force him to defund his own executive order, they stand to lose much more than he does. He’s a lame duck; he’s not going to defang his signature “legacy” move towards Latinos by signing a GOP bill that would block it, no matter how painful a veto might be. He can afford a standoff with the GOP on this issue. McConnell and Wicker arguably can’t, not only because it would blow up the “don’t be scary” message but because it might anger the Latino voters whom they’re hoping to appeal to next year. McConnell knows he’ll have to cave, in which case it’s better to play the long game and sit still until a Republican is in the White House. The flaw in that theory, of course, is that not even a Republican successor to Obama will rescind his executive order. The fear of alienating Latinos will be too great. What’ll happen instead is that Congress will pass an immigration reform deal that essentially ratifies O’s amnesty while providing some new border security measures to make conservatives tolerate it. And the new president will sign that happily, especially if his name rhymes with “Beb Jush.”

Two: Maybe Wicker’s tipping their hand in talking up a security-only bill. McConnell might be thinking that the GOP can get away with letting Obama slide on executive amnesty if, and only if, they do something to address conservative immigration concerns right up front. Solution: Pass a bill that focuses exclusively on tightening the border while quietly promising Obama that if he signs it, they’ll leave him alone about legalizing illegals. In fact, the border bill could be tied to funding for DHS in February, making it even harder for O to say no. None of this will or should comfort border hawks — it would mean a de facto GOP buy-in on executive amnesty and would, effectively, amount to comprehensive immigration reform through the back door, with the security part done by legislation and the legalization part done by the president. But it may be coming. And Democrats would be suckers to object by demanding that the GOP pass a legalization bill too; again, the politics of this issue will ensure that not even a Republican successor will dare revoke O’s order. It’s as good as law thanks to America’s changing demographics.

Three: Maybe Thune’s hinting that they’re only going to defund part of DHS in February, not the whole department. That makes sense politically, as “REPUBLICANS SHUT DOWN NATIONAL SECURITY” headlines won’t fly for the GOP. So they’ll fund everything except specific immigration agencies inside DHS, thereby hobbling O’s amnesty while allowing them to say that the department writ large got its money. Although, in that case, why didn’t they do that in the first place last month as part of the “cromnibus”? Why put all of DHS in jeopardy if you’re only going to carve up a tiny sliver?

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Will the public be afraid of the Democrats if they enact an agenda they believe in? Would most Americans vote for a party they are afraid of? Hell, we may as well elected Deomcrats last November because that Obama agenda is what we are going to get. Sheesh, alou!

Herb on January 6, 2015 at 10:00 AM

Thune must be wanting his RINO badge because this week he also said increases in energy (like gas) taxes are on the table.

Amnesty and increasing taxes…why are we voting republican again?

William Eaton on January 6, 2015 at 11:23 AM

If anyone wonders why Kim Kardadshian is famous, just look at American voters and Hot Air commenters. You are all drooling morons. You really think boehner is opposed to Barry????? BWHAHAHHAHAHA!!!! BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! Idiots.

acetylene420 on January 6, 2015 at 11:29 AM

McConnell is the Neville Chamberlain of Congress. ‘Don’t do anything scary.. appease the dictator and we’ll have a GOP president in our time…’

No. You won’t. You will lose constituents, the presidency, Congress and perhaps the entire nation to the Left by 2016.

DrDeano on January 6, 2015 at 11:50 AM

To #FireBoehner, Call These Reps Before 12:00 Eastrn 1-202-224-3121 #Congress— RJ (@UnitedCitizen01)

Torcert on January 6, 2015 at 11:57 AM

This thread is on Drudge, prominently displayed, in honors of the boner.

Schadenfreude on January 6, 2015 at 12:25 PM

The only people less trustworthy than Obama and his henchmen are the RINOs in Congressional Leadership roles. And now that 2014 is behind us Obama is at least man enough to look the nation straight in the eye and declare his true intentions while extending his middle fingers. Boehner and McConnell – not so much.

in_awe on January 6, 2015 at 12:49 PM

The GOP and the country is history. Allowing Obama to open
borders and hand out welfare to illegals is treasonous and worse
it allows Obama’s monarchy to continue. Sovereignty, solvency
and the rule of law are gone.

giatny on January 6, 2015 at 3:14 PM

Arizona told to stop prosecuting job-seeking immigrants

Schadenfreude on January 6, 2015 at 1:22 PM

This (that news) makes an utter mockery of the Constitution by the Obama Admin., to such degree that they’re not even trying to pretend to support, defend and uphold it. And that they’d target a Sheriff for doing his job by “gutting” the laws he’s enforcing is added insult of a personal, and politically ugly, level that’s unnecessary for any credible reason except to…undermine, denigrate, subvert the Constitution.

Just a part of the news from that article:

…Then, on Monday, an Arizona federal judge blasted a state law that stretched the crime of identity theft to include everyone from forgers to people simply seeking employment without valid documentation.

Now, if you’re in the nation illegally, you’re an indulged “immigrant” with all, if not more, of the rights than US citizens as honored in and by the Constitution.

For two people who claim to be “lawyers,” Obama and Holder do seem intent on even ruining any credibility of such an education and training.

But my primary disgust rests with the GOP who are not confronting and denouncing this game underway of destroying the Law of the Land.

Lourdes on January 6, 2015 at 4:51 PM

Fk-ing liars. ‘We don’t want to rock the boat’. It’s your g-dam *JOB* to rock the boat!

It doesn’t matter if Harry or Mitch head the senate – they have the same goals. Only Harry is outright about his – Mitch lies through his teeth about his.

And he actually believes these ‘undocumented’ voters (and you know they *will* vote just as they crossed the border illegally – organizations like La-rasa and the DNC will see to that) will actually vote for him. What an idiot!

We haven’t had a two-party system for about 8-10 years now. (Nor rule of law). May never have it again.

CrazyFool on January 6, 2015 at 5:02 PM

Amnesty and increasing taxes…why are we voting republican again?

William Eaton on January 6, 2015 at 11:23 AM

Because we’re stupid. Never again. F-in bastards.

DevilsPrinciple on January 6, 2015 at 9:02 PM