After having his leadership repudiated by his own caucus yesterday, last night Speaker Boehner turned to his best friend in the House, minority leader [mc_name name=’Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)’ chamber=’house’ mcid=’P000197′ ], for a life line. Using a procedural motion to suspend the rules, which required two-thirds vote, Boehner passed the Orwellian named Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act by a vote of 357-60. He did it with Democrat votes. Where he lost 51 GOP members on the earlier vote he lost 55 GOP members the second time around.
The mind boggles.
What is going to happen in one week that fixes this problem?
More to the point, what is going to happen in a week with funding that wouldn’t happen faster in a week without funding?
Right now both Boehner and McConnell are negotiating with themselves over the terms of their own surrender. This did not have to be.
Funding DHS is completely irrelevant to DHS continuing operations to national security is not jeopardized in any way, shape, or form. If you want to have your crotch groped by some mouth-breather at the airport, you secret fetish is not endangered. In a sane world, Boehner and McConnell would see that they can walk away from this farce and let Reid and Obama decide when they want DHS to resume full operations.
While the fallout and downside are minuscule, the stakes are huge. Will Congress acquiesce in letting Obama set his own immigration policy, a policy that runs counter to the law? The only tool Congress has in this battle is the appropriations authority. If it won’t refuse to appropriate money to fund non-essential functions of DHS, it has become irrelevant and we are a dictatorship, not a constitutional republic.