Correction: House Vote to Block Syrian Refugees WAS Veto-Proof
Earlier today, I made a mistake in saying that the House vote in favor of H.R. 4038 (the anti-Syrian/Iraqi refugee resettlement bill) would not have been enough to override a Presidential veto. Sorry to report that if the same votes were cast to override, it would have been enough to reject the veto. Overrides require two-thirds of those present and voting in both the House and Senate. In yesterday’s House vote, there were 426 voting, and the 289 yes votes were more than two-thirds. There were eight representatives who did not vote, six of whom were Democrats. If all 434 sitting representatives were present to vote, 291 would be needed for an override. So if there were an override vote, it would be pretty uncomfortably close.
It might not come to that, because the Senate would have to agree to the same legislation before there would be anything to veto.
We should not allow Congress to plunge headlong into fear-driven votes. Contact your Representative and Senators to urge that we live up to our values by welcoming Syrian and Iraqi refugees (Capitol switchboard to be connected to the House and Senate offices: 202-224-3121).
Or, there’s a Moveon.org petition urging the U.S. government to accept more Syrian refugees. I just signed!