Boehner and McConnell are both in need, as is the country, of a strategic solution to the DHS funding impasse. The current situation exists in response to President Obama’s illegal executive amnesty. The execution arm for that illegal action lies within the Department of Homeland Security. It’s clear that Senator McConnell is unable to get the existing House bill, which defunds the president’s illegal amnesty, passed in the Senate. It’s also clear that he could quite easily pass a clean HS funding bill. If McConnell and Boehner truly want to thwart the president’s illegal amnesty, and stand up for Constitutional separation of powers, then they need to use the fact that the Senate can pass a clean DHS funding bill as part of the strategy to defund the president’s illegal amnesty.
First, the Senate passes a clean bill, and sends it back to the House. Next, the House deconstructs DHS down to its component agencies, and separately funds those that have nothing to do with enforcing the president’s illegal amnesty through what I would call a UNIBUS. (OMNIBUS is used to describe massive government wide funding bills). The following agencies are some of those within DHS that should get funded through individual clean agency bills: USCG, FEMA, FLETC, TSA, USSS, NPPD, S&T and DNDO. Once an agency bill is passed, FEMA for instance, then that bill is sent to the Senate where the clean bill is also voted upon. It it may be possible to pass these bills without even needing Democrats in the Senate, as a clean FEMA Bill was already passed by the Senate within the full clean DHS bill. It’s possible that McConnell could deem it passed and move it on to the President and force his hand to either sign or veto a clean FEMA bill. The other agency bills should follow that bill rapidly and the Democrats and President forced to turn them back or fund DHS piecemeal. Once the agencies, which are the source of problem such as ICE and CBP, are the only ones left, their funding should be looked at for independent partial funding, and starved if necessary.
In the end this is a positive funding scheme as opposed to a negative funding scheme currently at impasse. The bills would positively fund only those agencies that the Republicans in the House and Senate what funded instead of trying to negatively withhold funds in a massive bill covering all of DHS.