Statement of Congressman Blumenauer on DHS/Immigration Votes
January 14, 2015
Sadly, I was forced to vote against H.R. 240, a bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security for its important mission. This legislation was hijacked to use as a vehicle for egregious provisions that would devastate the lives of hundreds of thousands of children and families in the United States.
It is stunning that our first vote on immigration in this Congress would be to revoke the rights of 600,000 children who came to the U.S. by no choice of their own. These outrageous amendments will probably result in a presidential veto of funding for Homeland Security, complicating our national security at a critical moment.
It is ironic, because House Republicans have stonewalled immigration reform and would not work with Democrats. They refused to allow a vote on the bipartisan immigration reform bill when it passed the Senate nearly a year and a half ago.
The President's executive action is the right path forward, bringing millions out of the shadows, strengthening families, and growing our economy. His bold step is no substitute for comprehensive immigration reform, but until then, is a critical step in the right direction.
I will fight to build on the President's action--and the advocacy that inspired it--to enact comprehensive immigration reform. There is no other solution. In the meantime, I trust cooler heads will prevail in the Senate and we will allow the Department the funding it needs.