Menendez, Booker urge GOP leaders to OK budget for Department of Homeland Security

Menendez, Booker urge GOP leaders to OK budget for Department of Homeland Security


By:  Christopher Maag
The Record


Calling a threat by Republicans to shut down the Department of Homeland Security “pretty insane,” New Jersey Sens. Robert Menendez and Cory Booker, both Democrats, called on leaders of the Republican-led Congress to approve the department’s budget and save a squabble over immigration policy for later.

But just weeks after leaders of both parties talked hopefully about ending hyper-partisan gridlock and working together to get bills passed, the tough language used by the senators during a Monday afternoon press conference at Newark airport suggested that old hatchets may not be buried so easily.

“What the Republicans are doing, this is the textbook definition of pure politics,” Menendez said. “This is as crazy as the last few plays of last night’s Super Bowl.”

The core of the disagreement is not the Homeland Security department’s budget at all. Rather it’s an executive action issued by President Obama in November 2014 that eased some restrictions against immigrants living in the United States illegally, including language allowing more parents and children to apply for deferred deportation.

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