Rep. Gallego to Speaker Boehner and House Rules Committee Chairman: Don’t Strip Out NDAA Provision on Military DREAMers Behind Closed Doors
Washington, DC – Yesterday Congressman Ruben Gallego sent a letter to Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner and to the Chairman of the House Rules Committee Pete Sessions urging them not to strike Rep. Gallego’s “Enable DREAMers to Serve in Uniform” amendment behind closed doors and without a fair up-or-down vote.
The amendment, which passed in the House Armed Services Committee with a bipartisan majority, expresses that “It is the sense of the House of Representatives that the Secretary of Defense should review” the United States Code in order to determine the possibility of allowing DACA recipients into our Armed Forces.
This week the House of Representatives will debate and vote on the National Defense Authorization Act which contains the “Enable DREAMers to Serve in Uniform” amendment.
However, Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) and 24 Republicans sent a letter to the House Rules Committee asking them to strike the provision before the NDAA reaches the floor this week, something that could be accomplished without a separate vote by resorting to an obscure legislative procedure known as a “self-executing amendment.”
Read the letter, here.
Congressman Ruben Gallego released the following statement:
“It would be contrary to the spirit of the rules of the House for the House Rules Committee to strike this amendment behind closed doors, denying an open debate and vote on an amendment that passed with a bipartisan majority in the House Armed Services Committee.
“This is not how Congress operates and it would be inappropriate for the House Rules Committee to overrule the will of a bipartisan majority of the committee of jurisdiction. The only reason why the House Rules Committee would strike the amendment in these back room dealings is a purely political one – to appease the fringe of the GOP and to try to control the deep divisions within their own party.
“The House Armed Services Committee has a reputation of doing what’s in the best interest of our country regardless of political affiliations; Republican leadership and the House Rules Committee must respect the will of the Committee and allow an open debate and vote in order to strike the amendment from NDAA.”