The Senate approved Jeh Johnson as the Department of Homeland Security Secretary 78 to 16 on Monday night. President Obama nominated Johnson to head the department in October following former Sec. Janet Napolitano’s resignation. At one point, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) said he would hold up Johnson’s nomination until he recived more information about border security, according to Politico. McCain told reporters that he wanted Johnson to provide “information necessary as to what is necessary to have 90 percent effective control of our border.”
In a letter to Republican senators, Johnson defended the Senate-passed comprehensive immigration bill. He did not explain specifics about implementing the law but wrote broadly about the need to fix the nation’s broken immigration system. “I believe reform must be comprehensive and include provisions that allow the federal government to continue efforts to strengthen border security, target employers who hire undocumented workers, and modernize the immigration system itself,” Johnson wrote in the letter, obtained by Politico.
The cloture vote to end debate on Johnson’s nomination required a simple majority instead of a filibuster-proof 60 votes after Democrats used a rare parliamentary move to eliminate the use of filibusters for most presidential nominees.
FILED UNDER: Department of Homeland Security, Executive Branch, featured, Jeh Johnson, USCIS