Katko, Brindisi introduce legislation to pay TSA officers during shutdown

Jan 23, 2019

Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) and Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-Utica) have introduced legislation that would pay transportation security officers during the partial federal government shutdown. It is an example of the bipartisanship and compromise Katko, a Republican, and Brindisi, a Democrat, say is needed to end the shutdown.

On Saturday, President Donald Trump offered a deal to Democrats to reopen the government: a three-year extension of DACA or the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, in exchange for more than $5 billion for a wall along the Southern Border.

Speaking to reporters at the Syracuse airport before they flew back to Washington D.C., Katko and Brindisi appeared to be in agreement with the proposal. Brindisi said he wants to review it first, but said it’s a step in the right direction.

“I’d like to see something more permanent done with DACA and I think we can get to that," Bridisi said. "But we have to get this government up and running and get these folks paid, so we can move forward.”

Katko said he would support the deal and he said Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi should negotiate a permanent fix to DACA with Trump, which Katko said Trump might go for.  

“They should take this opportunity, cut this deal, and so the president will know too, that he had to pay a deep price to get what he wanted, and he is less likely to do it again,” Katko said. "The biggest issue last term for Democrats was DACA. We had protests. We had Nancy Pelosi on the floor of the House for eight hours on a speech about DACA, saying we need a DACA fix. Here is a golden opportunity to fix DACA once and for all." 

In addition to paying transportation security officers, Katko said he's also signing on to a Democratic-sponsored bill that would pay air traffic controllers during the shutdown.