August 11th, 2010
02:11 PM ET
12 years ago

Senate to return briefly to pass border bill, honor former colleague

Washington (CNN) - The Senate will reconvene on Thursday to give unanimous consent for $600 million in emergency funding to help secure the U.S.-Mexico border.

A notice from Majority Leader Harry Reid's office said the session would pass a resolution on the death of former Sen. Ted Stevens and pass the border spending bill, which then would go to President Barack Obama to be signed into law. The House passed the measure Tuesday.

"This will be an extremely short session, as we will just be doing these two items," Reid's notice said. "Once the session concludes tomorrow, we are out until September 13."

Senators passed a similar plan last week, but must vote again on the House measure that includes the language on border funding. Reid's announcement signaled that Senate Republicans have agreed to approve the bill by unanimous consent, a voice vote that doesn't require the return of the entire chamber.

Among other things, the bill provides for roughly 1,500 new law enforcement agents, new unmanned aerial vehicles, new forwarding operating bases and $14 million in new communications equipment.

The measure has attracted strong Democratic and Republican support. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano praised the plan last week, saying it would "add important, permanent resources to continue bolstering security on our Southwest border."

"These assets are critical to bringing additional capabilities to crack down on transnational criminal organizations and reduce the illicit trafficking of people, drugs, currency and weapons," she said.

The bill is funded in part by imposing higher fees on personnel companies that bring foreign workers into the United States.

Filed under: issues • Senate
soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Rush Goebbels

    Good job Harry,you will win easily.

    August 11, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  2. Doug

    The Obama administration already added border patrol. The problem is, they are not allowed to do their job. They were sent as "support" and told they can work on vehicles and stuff, but they cannot stop or detain immigrants crossing the border. You can send all the agents you want, but if you don't let them do the job, what good are they?

    August 11, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  3. Sharon

    Pelosi could have saved the Govt money by voting on all these issues which confronted them for the past 60 days!

    What a cost to summon Represenatives–their jets to transport–security details that follow–JUST TO VOTE on something that could have been done 60 days ago.

    The monies to the border control legislation also had monies for State teachers–Fire Fighters–etc. Now the chaos will begin upon dispersing the monies to each State–even if the Govt tries to divide appropriately–PEOPLE WILL STILL BE FURIOUS–How does the State choose what teachers to retire–I AM SURE THIS GOVT HAD DETAILS IN THE LEGISLATION ABOUT WHAT STATE WOULD GET WHAT–AND A GUIDELINE ON WHO SHOULD BE REHIRED!

    The more money or senority you have will not matter- because you are probably at a higher pay level!

    August 11, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  4. Obama=Trickle Up Poverty

    Do they really think we are buying this? This will do nothing to secure the border. This is nothing more than a token political move as attempt to buy votes. Get real Obama and secure our borders!

    August 11, 2010 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. norma

    Emergency funding is a nice way to say it is adding to our deficit. The Republicans are all for spending this extra money, but not for spending money for teachers, fire fighters and police officers, even when that bill didn't add to the deficit. It was paid for by closing a business tax loophole.

    August 11, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  6. Independent In Albany

    Nice to see some action after the last regime did NOTHING for eight years

    August 11, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  7. fiscal responsibility

    Thanks goodness for Arizona. If they hadn't taken matters into their own hands, nothing would have been done. (Obama is still wrong about opposing the new law).

    That said, $600M sounds like an awful lot of cash.

    August 11, 2010 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  8. AmericanDoc

    Attention all senators and representatives: please hold as many town hall meetings as possible in person. Avoid telephoning them in. I and the rest of the American tax payers have paid you to show up and talk things over. It is your job. The onus is on you to prove that you have done something to earn your money. You have made significant changes to our country and we desperately need to talk. If this makes you anxious, good. You probably realise that you forgot who was in charge. You have been called into the bosses office as so many Americans have lately. Calling in sick only guarantees your eventual pink slip. Welcome to your new America. Might want to get that resume ready.

    August 11, 2010 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  9. Hugo

    The Senate will reconvene on Thursday to give unanimous consent for $600 million in emergency funding to help secure the U.S.-Mexico border.

    so does that go on top of the 100 billion we are already funding annually?

    August 11, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  10. anotherGDlefty

    Out until September 13...

    Now I'm assuming that Fox Opinion Channel will be yelling day & night that these are all modern day Marie Antionettes taking so much vacation time on our dime while the "little people" are still suffering from the recession.....

    Right Fox?

    It would be the fair & balanced thing to do.

    August 11, 2010 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  11. bill

    maybe the senate should stay in d.c.we dont get august recess.or eastor.or thanksgiving.or spring recess.BY THE WAY WHEN DO THESE LOOSERS WORK.

    August 11, 2010 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  12. awaitingliberalizationbyCNN

    Would this be the same Senator Reid that had convicted and campaigned against Stevens before his conviction was thown out? That would be hypocritical, but then again that would be Reid. The real reason for the session is that some union needs that border money and old dingy Harry has to make sure the unions get what they want to continue their lazy, inefficient, ineffective tyranyy over the American workplace, rather than let people who really want jobs work.

    August 11, 2010 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |