Demagogue Sen. Ted “Calgary” Cruz, the Canadian born Cuban immigrant who came to America on the “Castro Express Card” and the reincarnation of Joe McCarthy, is threatening the Continuing Resolution to fund the government past September 30 over President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
The nominal Speaker of The House Cruz and the Deportation Republicans in the “Cruz Caucus” are conspiring to attack the DACA program, or shut down the government — again. Cruz Hosts Late-Night Strategy Session With House Republicans on CR:
Sen. Ted Cruz again met with a small group of House Republicans late Tuesday night, this time to discuss over pizza a conservative strategy on the continuing resolution.
[“The usual suspects” at the meeting with Cruz included: Gohmert, Blackburn, Huelskamp of Kansas, Thomas Massie of Kentucky, Jim Bridenstine of Oklahoma, Randy Weber of Texas, and Michele Bachmann of Minnesota.]
While many of the Cruz meetings have seemed to lack a specific agenda or resolution, members trickled out of Tuesday’s nearly two-hour meeting repeating a similar refrain: We want a new expiration date on the CR.
Earlier in the evening, the House GOP leadership unveiled a bill to keep the government funded through Dec. 11. And the early review from conservatives attending Cruz’s meeting in the Texas Republican’s office was that Dec. 11 is too soon.
Instead, members came out of the meeting saying they wanted the CR to fund the government through March 1.
Pushing the next big spending showdown into March, members of the ‘Cruz Caucus’ said, would give the new 114th Congress, which could include a Republican-controlled Senate, an opportunity to tackle government funding.
A Dec. 11 expiration means Congress will still have to address an omnibus spending package in the lame duck, when, regardless of the election results, Harry Reid of Nevada will still be Senate majority leader.
Another issue members discussed at length was the Export-Import Bank. While many of the members voiced opposition to the credit agency, some said they understood the strategy of eventually decoupling Ex-Im from a spending bill, which the proposed CR does by extending the bank to June 30.
And this additional reporting, Reid Warns of Shutdown Showdown Over Immigration:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Tuesday that if a band of Republicans press for language blocking executive actions on immigration, they’re inviting a government shutdown.
“If I have anything to do with it? No, no, no,” the Nevada Democrat said of allowing a vote on such a proposal, as sought by a group of Senate and House conservatives led on the Senate side by Ted Cruz, Jeff Sessions and Mike Lee.
Asked what happens if the senators insist on considering it as part of the continuing resolution debate that’s expected next week, Reid pointed to a risk government funding could lapse.
“They have every right to do whatever they want legislatively. If they want to be the lead team of shutting down the government, that’s what they’re going to have to do,” Reid said.
“The House of Representatives has stood up and led,” Cruz said at a news conference before Reid spoke. “Let senators go on record whether or not they support amnesty. Senators who support amnesty, or those here illegally, let them look in the eyes of their constituents before election day, and say, ‘This is what I support, you let me know if you agree or not.’”
Cruz told reporters it would be “appropriate” to add the language to the CR, saying that lawmakers should use “any tool at our disposal.”
The National Republican Senatorial Committee has been using a procedural vote from earlier this year as a proxy to criticize Democrats for not blocking Obama from acting, although the vote the campaign committee is referring to is tied to a rather new parliamentary maneuver. Since last year, Budget Committee ranking member Jeff Sessions of Alabama has made attempts to deconstruct what’s known as the “amendment tree” by tabling, and thus killing, amendments within the tree.
The Senate’s rules place rather strict limits on the number of amendments and motions that may be pending on the floor at any one time. Using his prerogatives as majority leader, Reid has repeatedly filled the amendment tree to preclude any of his colleagues from offering amendments. That’s a practice that has frustrated Republicans to no end, even making an appearance as a point of contention at a town hall meeting last month in New Hampshire.
A successful motion to table Reid’s placeholder amendments could create parliamentary space for offering something else, such as a proposal to block the use of funds to implement executive actions on immigration. At the time Sessions made his motion, he said if successful on the parliamentary maneuvering, he would then offer language sponsored by Cruz.
But what Sessions, Cruz and a number of House Republicans sought Tuesday is actual consideration of a proposal barring the use of funds to expand deferred action, which would yield a much more straightforward vote.
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Reid said Tuesday that he would “certainly hope” the stopgap spending bill to keep the government operating into December would include funding requested by the administration for border security and the issue of unaccompanied migrant children.
But that’s a tough sell for many Republicans.
“The crisis at the southern border was caused by President Barack Obama’s executive order. We know that. When you talk to our agencies and officials that are involved in this process, they will tell you that. It is the magnet,” said Rep. Marsha Blackburn, appearing with Cruz and other Republicans from both chambers. “That executive order that established DACA is the magnet that is drawing people across this border.”
The Tennessee Republican spearheaded the House legislation to preclude funds for expanded deferred action.
Reid said that if the House doesn’t move an immigration bill, he hopes Obama “goes real big and does something administratively, which I believe he has the authority to do.”
The Arizona Republic’s Linda Valdez touched on this in her opinion today. Ted Cruz puts bull’s eye on Dreamers:
Today, Sen. Ted Cruz suggested Congress use a needed continuing budget resolution as a vehicle to freeze the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program, the president’s executive order that allows Dreamers to temporarily live and work here.
The stop-gap funding measure is necessary to keep the government running after September. Cruz says it could be used to stop “amnesty” for Dreamers.
These are kids who grew up here. To the GOP, they are just political fodder.
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But at least the kids were safe. At least there was DACA.
Now there’s Cruz’s bull’s eye.