House Republican Unveils Plan To Force Consideration Of Bill Linking Border Security To Foreign Aid

A Republican congressman said on Sunday he found a way to force a package linking foreign aid with some border security reforms to the House floor for consideration.

The legislation, introduced by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, is separate from the $95 billion foreign aid bill passed by the Democrat-led Senate that the GOP-led House has so far refused to take up.

Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), who said he just returned from Ukraine, told “Face the Nation” moderator Margaret Brennan on CBS that, as of Friday, the group filed with the House clerk for “expedited consideration.”

“Normally any kind of discharge like that would take 30 days to even be considered ripe. But we figured out a way with the parliamentarian to expedite that to a seven-day period,” he said.

Fitzpatrick added, “What our bill does is it combines border security with this foreign aid, both existential, and we are forcing this bill to the floor to make sure that everybody acts.”

The legislation backed by Fitzpatrick would last for a year and comes with a price tag of $66.32 billion, including “defense-only” funds to support Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, according to a press release.

It also would block the entry of “inadmissible” migrants “to achieve operational control over U.S. borders” and require that immigration officers “detain and immediately expel” them.

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) has criticized the Senate bill for lacking border security policy changes after an immigration deal was dropped from the legislation when it failed to advance this month and said the House would “continue to work its own will” in the absence of reforms.

The White House released a schedule for this week showing that Johnson and other leaders plan to meet with President Joe Biden on Tuesday to discuss national security legislation as well as keeping the government open.

Fitzpatrick dismissed the notion that the alternative bill he backs would be “short-circuiting anything” and insisted his bipartisan coalition is “adding a pressure point to make sure this gets done because we cannot afford to wait here.”

One component in the Senate foreign aid package that the House bill lacks is humanitarian aid, which Brennan noted could be a “non-starter” for many Democrats.

Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME), who appeared on the program with Fitzpatrick, said amendments could “potentially” add humanitarian support to the measure.

“Although I think that we also have to set priorities,” he added. “And so, at the end of the day, what are the most important crises that we have to deal with in the here and now in the very short term? And I would say that that would be securing our border and also helping avoid battlefield catastrophes in Ukraine.”

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