By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Wednesday, February 25, US Representatives Martha Roby (R-Montgomery), Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville), Gary Palmer (R-Hoover), and Bradley Byrne (R-Montrose) today joined their fellow conservative lawmakers in a letter urging that House leadership hold firm in fully funding the Department of Homeland Security while specifically preventing funds from going to implement President Obama’s executive actions on immigration which they consider to be unlawful.
Congresswoman Roby said on Facebook, “You’ll see more on this in the coming days. Even though Senate Democrats continue to block a Homeland Security funding bill we passed last month, the House must hold firm. We have a responsibility to prohibit funding from being used to implement President Obama’s unlawful executive amnesty. I believe it would be a mistake for Senate Democrats and the president to choose executive amnesty over the responsible funding of Homeland Security, but it will be theirs to make. As our letter states, “District Court rulings can be overturned, but the power of the purse is absolute.” Stay tuned.”
Congressman Brooks said on Facebook, “I joined in sending a letter to House leadership, urging them to hold strong and force the Senate to act on the House-passed Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill that stops President Obama’s unlawful executive amnesty. I hope Speaker Boehner will continue to show backbone on this issue, because illegal aliens coming into America is a national security issue. What good does it do to have a Department of Homeland Security if you’re going to allow anybody to cross our borders, terrorist or not, and come unlawfully into the United States of America.”
Congressman Byrne also wrote on Facebook, “I recently joined a number of my conservative colleagues in sending a letter to House leadership, including Speaker Boehner, urging leadership not to back down from the fight over President Obama’s illegal executive amnesty. The House has passed a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security and halt the President’s illegal action. The House has done our job, and the Senate should act.”
Rep. Brooks said, “I remain committed to voting against any bill that funds the president’s amnesty. We are doing everything we can to communicate with House leadership that it is very important to the American people, who we were elected to represent, that we fund DHS in a way that protects national security.”
In November, President Barack H Obama (D) angry with House Republicans who opposed his immigration reform bill announced that he was going to circumvent the United States Congress and act unilaterally, granting de facto amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants. Since then, Congress has attempted to use its “power of the purse” to block the actions. Last week a federal judge in Texas ruled that the president had overstepped his authority in issuing the orders. The President has asked an appeal court to lift the stay. Alabama joined Texas and 24 other states in the lawsuit arguing that the President’s actions will cost the states billions of dollars and are being done unconstitutionally. The Texas federal judge put a stay on the President’s amnesty while the case is before his court.
In a letter to House leaders led by Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Representatives Roby, Brooks, Palmer, Byrne and other conservatives said the Legislative Branch must not rely solely on the courts but exercise its own Constitutional authority to prevent the unlawful actions.
The letter from House conservatives wrote:
“Dear Speaker Boehner, Leader McCarthy, and Whip Scalise:
We write you today to thank you for standing firm and forcing the Senate to act on a Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill that stops President Obama’s unlawful executive actions on immigration. The House of Representatives continues to reflect the will and sentiment of the majority of Americans by combatting the President’s executive overreach.
The Federal District Court’s concerns with the President’s executive actions on immigration are very encouraging. However, we must remember that these decisions are subject to review by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court of the United States, and the ultimate fate of the President’s executive action remains in question. For this reason, the Legislative Branch has a responsibility to use its exclusive and constitutionally-granted authority to prevent the President’s unlawful usurpation of power, without waiting for a final interpretation from the Judicial Branch. District Court rulings can be overturned, but the power of the purse is absolute.
As elected representatives of the people, we have an obligation to act. American voters supported our position of opposing executive overreach during the November elections, and are solely responsible for giving us control of the Senate as well as a historic majority in the House.
Regardless of how we may feel about immigration issues generally, the issue at hand is the preservation of the separation of powers and the preservation of the Constitution. Now is the time to stand firm against these unlawful executive actions.”
Members of Congress signing the letter include: Martha Roby, Jeff Duncan, Jim Jordan, Matt Salmon, Dave Brat, Louie Gohmert, Steve King, Ryan Zinke, John Fleming, Jim Bridenstine, Ted Yoho, Bradley Byrne, Gary Palmer, Mo Brooks, Tim Huelskamp, Curt Clawson, Mark Sanford, Randy Weber, Paul Gosar, John Duncan, David Schweikert, Doug Lamborn, Brian Babin, Walter Jones, Steven Palazzo, Jeff Miller, Cynthia Lummis, Barry Loudermilk, Tom McClintock, and Lou Barletta
The Department of Homeland Security is only funded til the end of the day on Friday. Moderates are urging the leadership to compromise and pass a bill without prohibitions against the President’s immigration actions.