The House of Representatives voted to overturn President Obama’s executive actions on immigration by a margin of 236-191 on Wednesday.
The vote also overturns a a directive from 2012 that safeguarded immigrants who illegally came to the United States as children.
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) spoke on the House floor in praise of the legislation, which had a surprisingly high level of support from moderate Republicans. Boehner said:
“Let me thank all my colleagues who have worked to put this bill together. Today I rise – and the House rises – to support and defend our Constitution.
We do not take this action lightly, but simply there is no alternative. This is not a dispute between the parties, or even between the branches of our government. This executive overreach is an affront to the rule of law and to the Constitution itself.
I appreciate all the efforts of those working to fix our broken immigration system, especially since I’m one of them. But what we are dealing with is a president who has ignored the people, has ignored the Constitution, and even his own past statements.”
The legislation faces fierce opposition from Congressional Democrats, though. Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY) conveyed his disdain for the bill, saying that he deemed it to be overtly motivated by politics:
“For the first time in history, they are holding our security hostage to the politics of immigration.”
The measure was an amendment to the Department of Homeland Security’s funding legislation. The vote could result in deportations of President Obama’s highly-touted “Dreamers.”