Boehner Goes Off On Obama Over Immigration Crisis

"When is he going to take responsibility for something?" the speaker said of the president Thursday.

National Journal

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House Speaker John Boehner had some harsh words for President Obama on the border crisis, raising his voice and slamming the podium during a press conference Thursday.

When asked if Congress needed to approve a $3.7 billion request from the president to help ease a recent surge of unaccompanied minors, Boehner repeatedly said that the House would not grant Obama a "blank check." The speaker added that the children should be taken care of and then sent back.

Pressed on the issue, Boehner appeared to get heated. "This is problem of the president's own making. He's been president for five years! When is he going to take responsibility for something?" he shouted.

Although the speaker praised the National Guard, calling it "uniquely suited" to deal with the crisis, he lambasted the president for asking for more funding this week than he had requested earlier in the crisis.

"In other words, he won't do it for the kids, it's all about politics," Boehner said. "We're not giving the president a blank check." Boehner added that the House will act this month on the border issue. But he said that he is waiting for reports from the House Appropriations Committee and other groups before making any decisions about potential legislation.

Boehner said that he agreed with the White House that a 2008 law offering greater protections for young migrants from noncontiguous countries needs to be changed. The language should be changed to treat those children like those who arrive in the United States from Mexico, he said.