Continuing coverage of the crisis on the Texas border and the surge of unaccompanied minors

Texas Delegation Reacts to President on Border Crisis

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    NEWSLETTERS

    President Obama spent Thursday in Austin, where he called on Texas Republicans to help pass $3.7 billion in emergency spending to address the crisis on the border. (Published Thursday, Jul 10, 2014)

    Members of the Texas congressional delegation are weighing in after President Barack Obama asked their help in getting a bill passed that would supply $3.7 billion in emergency funding for the border crisis.

    Democratic Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, who attended a meeting in Dallas with Obama and Gov. Rick Perry on Wednesday, echoed the request.

    "Texas Democrats are ready to move forward on immigration reform. I do not know if my fellow Texans in the Republican Party are ready to move forward. So far they have not moved to pass comprehensive immigration legislation, even though legislation has passed in the Senate. I hope the plea from the president and other members of the Republican party leads them to move on passing comprehensive immigration reform," Johnson said in a statement.

    Rep. Pete Sessions told NBC5 he does not think the proposed legislation has a chance of passing as is, and many Democrats from North Texas agree.

    “The president’s package arrived on Monday or Tuesday, and I think the president is making this a political issue by within a day or so if it being sent to the Congress, trying to single the Texas delegation out as those who would hold it up,” said Sessions.

    Sessions says the proposal doesn’t go far enough to address the overall problem.

    Rep. Jeb Hanserling agrees, saying, in part:

    "Given President Obama’s lack of priority in enforcing our nation’s existing immigration laws, Congress cannot and should not rubber stamp this Administration’s $3.7 billion request which gives priority to dealing with the repercussions of this self-inflicted crisis over preventing and eliminating the underlying causes - which are an unsecured border and a failure to enforce our immigration laws."

    And Rep. Roger Williams sent a letter to the president, asking him to sit down with the delegation.

    "On behalf of my Texas colleagues, I plead for your time," Williams wrote. "I would like to invite you to sit down with the Texas delegation so we can find a solution together. You carved out an entire afternoon to raise money in the Lone Star State while stubbornly refusing to visit the border, but I hope that the two miles between our House and the White House will not be a deterrent. Please contact me to arrange this vital meeting, and let's fix the problem now."