Senate Anti BDS Legislation Stops 4 Votes Short of 60

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The movement among Democrats to oppose any bills that didn't end the shutdown began over the weekend after Maryland Senator Chris Van Hollen said in a tweet that Senate Democrats should block consideration of any other legislation until McConnell of Kentucky allowed a vote on the bills passed by the House to open the government.

By a vote of 240-188 along mostly partisan lines, the House passed the bill and sent it to the Republican-controlled Senate as part of Democrats' latest strategy to end partial government shutdowns at many federal agencies that began on December 22.

The vote was 240-188, with eight Republicans joining with Democrats to pass the bill.

House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey says taxpayers rely on the IRS to assist them in filing taxes and financial planning but now "don't have anyone they can turn to" for answers.

The White House has rejected House Democrats' approach, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has insisted repeatedly that he will not bring up any bill in the Senate that does not have Trump's support. "And we basically [give] more powers and more powers to executives, not just to President Trump but I mean to many executives before him".

TRT World spoke to Ahmed Rehab, Executive Director of the Chicago chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, to understand why Republicans chose to introduce this bill now.

Rubio amped up his attack on Democrats, accusing the party of using the shutdown as an excuse to avoid the bill.

At the moment, the bill has the necessary 60 votes because of the seven Democratic co-sponsors and the support of minority "leader" Chuck Schumer. Marco Rubio's measure, called the "Combatting BDS Act".

According to President Donald Trump, who peppered his plea for border wall funding with descriptions of murders committed by people who arrived in the country illegally, it was an unchecked influx of migrants carrying dark intent and illegal drugs.

The ACLU disagreed, calling on Rubio to "reconsider" the bill, which it said "makes a mockery of the First Amendment". "As I've stated clearly, the Senate will not waste floor time on show votes, messaging votes, or any other proposals which fail to check those boxes regarding the funding bills".

"We shouldn't be forcing these men and women to shoulder the burden of Democrats' unwillingness to work with President Trump and congressional Republicans to solve the humanitarian and security crisis on our southern border", he said.

As many as half a dozen GOP senators have said the government should reopen while border security negotiations with Democrats continue. "As Democrats increasingly turn on Israel, Jewish liberals, many of whom have already purposely muddled Jewish values with progressive ones, are attempting to untether Israel from its central role in Jewish culture and faith for political expediency", Harsanyi writes. All Democrats voted for the legislation. But Trump has said he will not sign the measure, and McConnell has repeatedly said the Senate won't advance legislation the president won't support. "I hope that my Democratic colleagues don't pile on even more pointless obstruction".

"I've worked closely with you on BDS, @MarcoRubio, and disagree with you here".

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