U.S. House Speaker John Boehner has chosen a Miami Republican to sit on a committee hammering out a defense bill the House GOP used earlier this year as a way to vote against immigration.
Rep. Carlos Curbelo, who is pro-immigration reform, was one of only 20 Republicans (including fellow Miami Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen) to vote against an amendment that stripped the National Defense Authorization Act from a provision that would have pushed the Pentagon to allow young people brought into the country illegally as children to serve in the military.
Now Curbelo will be on the committee to try to iron out differences between the more conservative House and the less conservative Senate over the bill. But his appointment is not about immigration, Boehner said, but about his district, which extends from Westchester to Key West.
"Rep. Curbelo works tirelessly for the Coasties stationed at US Coast Guard Sector Key West, and as the representative of our country's southern-most Congressional district, has unique insights into the eradication of drug trafficking," Boehner said in a statement provided by Curbelo's office.
"As Vice Chairman of the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, it is a privilege to represent my South Florida constituents while working on the very important issues affecting our military servicemen and women," Curbelo said.
It is the freshman's first conference committee appointment.