Republicans in Congress must be careful not to allow threats of government showdowns to erode public confidence in their party's ability to lead, says Rep. Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania, The Hill reported.
Dent, frustrated by the current budget fight over Department of Homeland Security funding and immigration reform, has taken to the media to warn his colleagues that failure will be on them and not President Barack Obama in the current battle, The Hill said.
"It’s important that we go about avoiding these types of cliffs or showdowns that, in my view, won’t end well for us Republicans," the Republican centrist told The Hill. "They will damage us as we move into a presidential year and damage our likely presidential nominees."
Dent, who doesn't fear bucking leadership to talk bluntly about strategy, decried the drama that he's seen since the GOP swept the 2014 midterm elections.
"Week one, we had a speaker election that did not go as well as a lot of us would have liked," Dent told The Hill. "Week two, we got into a big fight over deporting children, something that a lot of us didn’t want to have a discussion about. Week three, we are now talking about rape and incest and reportable rapes and incest for minors. … I just can’t wait for week four."
Dent has urged his House colleagues to approve money to keep Homeland Security running, the Morning Call reported,
as the clock ticks on a Friday deadline.
He sought a "clean" bill that funded the agency and was not tied to certain immigration reforms promoted by several of the party's more conservative lawmakers. He noted that a short-term plan would only create yet another impasse as a new deadline emerged down the road.
"I never felt that defunding the president’s executive action was part of a good tactic. I don’t think that tactic will yield a successful outcome," Dent told The Hill. "My comments are about tactics, and I believe bad tactics yield a bad outcome.
"Somebody told me, 'You don’t know what the Senate will pass.' Well, I know what the hell the Senate is not going to pass — they’re not going to pass the bill we sent them."
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell offered a "clean" bill vote late Tuesday that would provide funding for DHS through the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30, the National Journal said.
A House strategy on moving forward remained undecided Wednesday morning.
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