Johnson assured us that it is not Trump who calls the shots in the House, but the reality is that the magnate is at the center of power in the Republican Party.
Two similar but not identical draft bills will compete for approval in U.S. Congress this year.
Both deal with the situation on the Mexican border, particularly in relation to security issues, whether real or imagined, caused by the arrival of asylum seekers, migrants without legal documentation and drug trafficking.
Neither of the two seem likely to pass this election year, although the Republican majority in the House of Representatives is promoting one of the bills as a condition for passing $62 billion in military aid to Ukraine to fight the Russian invasion.
For months, the Republican House majority has supported the draft legislation to deal with the “crisis” on the Mexican border, which was so harsh it did not get a single Democratic vote, but which Republicans are insisting on as a starting point for negotiations.
A bipartisan group in the Senate announced it had reached an agreement Sunday that includes stricter policies on border control and admission of refugees. The legislation will go to a vote in the Senate this week and return to the House.
But Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson has already declared the Senate bill “dead on arrival” and argued that Congress cannot fully secure the border unless a Republican president is elected in November.
Almost as transparent was former President Donald Trump, the likely Republican presidential candidate this November, who recently cautioned lawmakers to sidestep the emerging border deal to avoid handing a potential political victory to Joe Biden, who is seeking reelection.
“I do not think we should do a Border Deal, at all, unless we get EVERYTHING needed to shut down the INVASION of Millions & Millions of people, many from parts unknown, into our once great, but soon to be great again, Country!” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “Also, I have no doubt that our wonderful Speaker of the House, Mike Johnson, will only make a deal that is PERFECT ON THE BORDER,” Trump added. “Remember, without Strong Borders and Honest Elections, we don’t have a Country!!!”
Johnson has assured us that it is not Trump who calls the shots in the House, but the reality is that the former president is at the center of power in the Republican Party.
In fact, if reports of an improving economy continue and inflation subsides, security, or rather border insecurity, would be the only Republican campaign issue with national resonance for voters.
And so it is that the patriotic Republican wish to restore border security is trumped by the more selfish desire to win the presidential election at any cost.