House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) minced no words Wednesday morning when he blamed Democrats for holding up a Department of Homeland Security spending bill, and said it's time for those Democrats to "get off their ass" and allow the bill to move.
"The House has done its job," Boehner told reporters. "Why don't you go ask the Senate Democrats when they're going to get off their ass and do something, other than to vote 'no.' "
All last week, Senate Democrats blocked the DHS bill from moving, an act that could lead to a partial shutdown of DHS when funding runs out on February 27. Democrats hate the bill because it would also defund President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration.
But Republicans say Senate Democrats need to live with that language, or apparently face a partial DHS shutdown. On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said it might be up to the House to act next, but House Republicans quickly shot down that idea, and Boehner himself rejected it on Wednesday.
"The House did its job," he said. "We won the fight to fund the Department of Homeland Security and to stop the president's unconstitutional actions."
"Now it's time for the Senate to do their work. In the gift shop out here, they've got these little booklets about how a bill becomes a law," he added, implying that the Senate's role in this cannot be to simply give up.
When asked if the DHS fight is going as he expected, Boehner said, "It's working exactly the way I envisioned."
A spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) admonished Boehner for swearing, and recommended that Republicans cave in and pass a DHS bill that doesn't attack Obama's immigration plan.
"We know Speaker Boehner is frustrated but cursing is not going to resolve the squabbling among Republicans that led to this impasse," said spokesman Adam Jentleson. "Democrats have been clear from day one about the way out of this mess: take up the clean Homeland Security funding bill which Republicans signed off on in December – and which is ready to come to the Senate floor – pass it, and move on."
Boehner also had tough words for Obama's opposition to legislation approving the Keystone pipeline. The House is expected to pass that bill today, which would send it to the White House for Obama.
"Even the president's own State Department will say that it creates 42,000 new jobs," Boehner said. "But instead of listening to the people, the president is standing with a bunch of left-fringe extremists and anarchists."