In a rare move, US House Speaker John Boehner was among those who voted to approve a bill funding the Homeland Security Department through the end of September, sending the bill to the desk of President Barack Obama for a signature.
Mr Boehner does not vote often and had previously opposed a bill allowed Mr Obama’s executive order protecting millions of illegal immigrants from deportation to stand. Tuesday’s bill does nothing to stop the president’s order CNN reported.
Homeland Security funding has been a hot issue on Capitol Hill for the past few weeks and the department nearly was shut down last week, when the House worked late Friday to extend funding for one week.
Had funding expired, thousands of government employees would have been furloughed and essential employees would have been forced to work without pay.
Conservatives in the House had sought a repeal of Mr Obama’s executive order as a sticking point to passing funding for Homeland Security and had passed such a bill, but Republicans in the Senate were not able to secure enough votes to avoid a filibuster.
The Senate passed the funding bill last week and Republicans, seeing they were not going to be able to restrict Mr Obama’s executive order, passed the Senate bill on Tuesday afternoon. The president is expected to sign the bill.
Mr Obama announced the immigration action on 20 November. The order would allow 4.7 million of the 11 million illegal immigrants in the US to stay in the country without fears of deportation. The president said his motive was to help the estimated 4.4 million illegal immigrants whose children are legal residents.
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