Lawmakers have only hours to reach a decision on a bill that would keep the Department of Homeland Security funded, and avoid veering off yet another political cliff. But as Congress nears its Friday deadline, Democrats are pointing fingers at Republicans for pushing them to this point with such a large risk to national security.
“I don’t mind them being dumb. I do mind them being dangerous," Democratic Congressman Steve Israel said on msnbc Friday. "And three-week funding of Homeland Security? It's dangerous."
Meanwhile, 2016 GOP hopefuls rallied at CPAC Friday morning to voice their continuing disapproval for President Obama’s executive actions on immigration--the core reason for their political power-play to delay funding.
“The American people see a president who bows to political correctness, in denial of the threats we face, making grave miscalculations, that make the world less safe,” former Texas Governor Rick Perry told a crowd at CPAC.
In response to Perry’s comments, Israel said they were laughable and ignored the real issue at hand. “Look if you want to talk about failed leadership, while these guys are giving their red meat speeches at CPAC, we are just hours away from a shutdown for the Department of Homeland Security because Republicans have brought us yet another manufactured political crisis,” he said.
“I don’t mind them being dumb. I do mind them being dangerous."'
The current proposal on the table now is to extend funding to DHS temporarily, something Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., urged Congress to do hours before the vote.
“Three weeks of full funding is exactly the right thing to do," Issa said. "Our enemies will know that we take homeland security seriously, but we also take immigration seriously."
Democrats say that this proposal only postpones an important decision, and ignores the sustained safety of the America people. Rep. Israel recommended they bring their angst over the president’s actions elsewhere and take steps that do not hold the security of the American people in the balance.