Even Nancy Pelosi isn’t pressuring House Democrats to fall in lock-step with her precious Barack.
According to this, Democrats from the House of Representatives met with the Department of Homeland Security to discuss how DHS was planning to screen Syrian refugees who are coming into the United States. This was in preparation for a vote over a bill introduced in the House that would limit the number of refugees the U.S. takes in and even possibly pause the refugee program for a time. To make a long story short, it didn’t go so well –
Earlier Thursday, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson faced strong resistance from House Democrats at a closed-door meeting. The goal was to explain how the refugee program worked, but their presentation did not “not going over well” and went “in the weeds,” according to a Democratic source in the room.
This source said the “message on this is too complicated.”
At the meeting with House Democrats, administration officials argued that a certification process included in the bill can’t be done. But several Democrats countered that the President does certifications all the time.
New York Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney told Johnson that the issue is “toxic” and the administration arguments are “insufficient.”
House Democratic leaders say they did not “whip” the bill or pressure members to back the administration.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told members before the meeting to essentially vote their conscience on the bill, saying, “Nobody is asking you to do anything but listen.”
When you’ve lost Nancy Pelosi… this thing is REALLY bad.
And it turns out that DHS’s presentation was enough to get enough bipartisan support for the bill –
That’s a stunning defeat for @POTUS – House refugee bill passes 289-137. Veto-proof majority (Boehner seat is vacant)
— Jonathan Karl (@jonkarl) November 19, 2015
Next up, the bill goes to the Senate, where Senile Senator Harry Reid has promised that it will fail (never thought I’d see him go crazier than Pelosi, but there it is). But regardless, it got through the House. And that is something to be celebrated.