Wednesday, February 25, 2015

WATCH THOSE BARBS: McSally Goes National In Border, Immigration Fence-Straddling; Favors Clean DHS Funding Bill... Or, Does She? (Answer: She Does.)

Arizona freshman Rep. Martha McSally (R-CD2) took (border) fence-straddling to the national stage today, as Congress shuffles towards a possible shutdown of the Department of Homeland Security.

She authored an op-ed column in the USA Today today* which seemed to make it pretty clear that she supported separating the DHS funding bill from the provisions to defund President Obama's immigration-related executive actions.  Here is her 2nd paragraph:

Now that he has defied even his own logic, the president's actions should be reversed, but not by withholding funding from the men and women who put their lives on the line to keep our country safe
McSally did blur the issue a bit toward the conclusion of her column by discussing the need for immigration reform. But even there, she ends by saying "Instead of playing games with the men and women who defend our homeland, Congress needs to get to work and do its job. That means securing our border and fixing our broken immigration system." (emphasis added)

Pretty clear, right?

No. when the Tucson Weekly's Jim Nintzel re-questioned McSally's spokesman about how the Congresswoman would vote if the House is presented with a stripped-down DHS funding bill.  Communications Director Patrick Ptak could only say that he "will keep you updated."

Of course, it would be VERY surprising if the House does face a DHS funding bill without the GOP's efforts to defund DACA/DAPA (aka Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents) and McSally were to vote against it.

After all, as Arizona's Politics reported last month, McSally was one of only 26 Republicans to vote against attaching the immigration riders to the funding bill in the first place.  At that time, she did not acknowledge that vote; in fact, her statement made it appear that she was all for it.

Does McSally think that the immigration hardliners in the Republican party (and her swing district) do not keep track of her more moderate votes or op-eds?  Or, that "establishment Republicans" and Democrats will look the other way as she continues to play footsie with the more conservative wing?

Refusing to acknowledge her obvious vote on the stripped-down bill that is going to be sent back to the House from the Senate is too cute by half.  And, it would be a shame if the barbs on that fence that she is straddling ripped her clothes.

* Even after 30+ years, I have not tired of using the "in the USA Today today" line. It is just fun to say aloud.

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