- “I’ve been requesting a meeting with the president for weeks, a month now,” Johnson told reporters.
- House Republicans have insisted that any border security and foreign aid package must be nothing less than their conservative-only HR 2 border bill.
President Mike Johnson demands a meeting with President Biden before accepting any national security funding in the House.
“I have been requesting a meeting with the president for weeks, a month. “I’ve been asking to sit down with the president to talk about the border, to talk about national security,” Johnson told reporters Tuesday. “That meeting has not been granted.”
It comes after Johnson’s GOP-led House of Representatives successfully impeached the Secretary of Homeland Security. Alejandro Mayorkas, but opposed any prospect of passing a national security and immigration package originating in the upper house.
The Senate first attempted to pass a bipartisan deal with provisions on foreign aid and immigration, but bulked up that package because of Republican opposition to the immigration parts.
The Senate then successfully passed a $95 billion aid package with money for Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan and Gaza and no immigration provisions, by 70-29.
President Mike Johnson demands a meeting with President Biden before accepting any national security funding in the House of Representatives.
Johnson has insisted that he will not go to the House floor. He claimed both deals lacked the true border security measures Republicans are demanding.
“The Republican-led House of Representatives will not be hindered or forced to pass a foreign aid bill that a majority of Republican senators opposed and that does nothing to secure or establish borders.”
‘I’m going to continue to push for (a meeting) because there are very serious issues that need to be addressed and if the speaker of the House can’t sit down with the president of the United States, that’s a problem.’
“I don’t know why you are uncomfortable with the president sitting in front of me, but I will do it in good faith because we have to solve this problem and do everything we can,” the speaker continued.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre blamed the president when asked about a meeting with Biden.
‘I think the speaker doesn’t understand what his job is. He puts that bill on the ground. He introduced that bill; will get bipartisan support.”
“He’s the one who’s killing this.”
Johnson said that instead of passing a stand-alone package without any immigration provisions, the Senate should have amended its original bill to include “real border security provisions that would really help end the ongoing catastrophe.”
“Instead, the Senate foreign aid bill says nothing about the most pressing issue facing our country.”
House Republicans have insisted that any border security and foreign aid package must be nothing less than their uniquely conservative HR 2 border bill. They have also insisted that discussions on any type of bipartisan agreement should be led by the House and the White House, not the Senate.
Democrats eviscerated Republicans over their refusal to take up the original Senate bill, which was backed by the border patrol union. They are now looking for ways to force national security aid to be withdrawn without Johnson’s approval.
Democratic leadership has discussed the possibility of forcing the bill through a discharge petition. This would require 218 members to register. Dozens of Democrats could walk out over opposition to Israel funding, so they would need a significant number of Republicans to come on board.
Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., chairman of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, revealed Wednesday that he is working with members of the House and Senate on a new deal for aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, along with security border.
He said he hopes the agreement will be bipartisan and released in the coming days.