Speaking at an event in Cambridge, Massachusetts, last week, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi argued it was the issue of government spending, not Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), that was increasing the chances of a government shutdown.
“If there never were one Dreamer on the face of the Earth … we would still not have an agreement in the budget debate,” Pelosi said.
She went on to claim there would be no shutdown if Republicans would agree to “lift the domestic spending in the same proportion they’re lifting defense” spending included in a stopgap measure.
So when Republican leaders agreed to boost non-defense spending, her bluff was called. The House did approve a temporary spending bill to extend most agency funding until March 23 and promptly sent it to the Senate for consideration.
Prospects of another shutdown were dead, until Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) revived them, telling reporters spending bill without a DACA promise was tantamount to “a complete betrayal.”
Pelosi relented after Gutierrez and private opposition from other Congressional Hispanic Caucus members.
While conceding “many Democratic priorities” were addressed but since the bill “does nothing to advance bipartisan legislation to protect Dreamers” she and the Democrats would not support it and risk a shutdown – which she had claimed would not happen.
As Senate leaders were working out an agreement to avoid a shutdown, Pelosi filibustered in the House by reading letters from DACA beneficiaries, passages from the Bible and other stories about illegal immigrants.
Pelosi, who has spent most of the last few weeks dismissing $1,000 tax breaks for American taxpayers, showed ultimate fealty to open border special interests.
Speaker Ryan told reporters he would allow a vote on any immigration bill that President Trump could support, even those with grossly generous amnesty provisions.
Last month, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer demonstrated his willingness to risk America’s national security for his own political future. Now, it is Nancy’s turn.