CAPITOL HILL - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is running out of time to wrangle with an increasingly unruly caucus, seeking to unite Democrats at odds over oversight of the Trump Administration and several key bills impacting defense spending and immigration enforcement.
The U.S. House of Representatives is set to recess for the annual extended summer district working session beginning Friday July 26. That timeline gives the House Democratic leadership just three weeks to pass the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), as well as a number of new immigration bills addressing progressive Democrats’ concerns about the humanitarian crisis at the southern border.
Immigration spending sparked a fight between Pelosi and a faction of her party last month. Four progressive members of the Democratic caucus – Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashia Tlaib of Michigan – voted against the version of the bill passed by the U.S. Senate, citing concerns the $4.6 billion aid package enabled harsh treatment of immigrants by border control agents and officials.
The House speaker renewed progressives’ frustrations when she downplayed the influence of the four freshman members of Congress who voted against the bill in a New York Times interview published Saturday.
“All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world,” Pelosi was quoted as saying. “But they didn’t have any following. They’re four people and that’s how many votes they got.”
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