House rebukes Obama, votes for enhanced rules for Syrian refugees

The House on Thursday ignored President Obama's veto threat and voted overwhelmingly in favor of a bill that would impose stringent background checks on all refugees from Syria, which could make it much harder for refugees to gain admittance into the United States.

The bill passed with such significant Democratic support that it calls into question whether President Obama's threatened veto of the bill can be sustained in the House. Democrats voted for the legislation even after a private briefing Thursday morning by White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough and Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, which failed to convince Democrats to change their decision to support the legislation.

To get around Obama's veto, the House would need a two-thirds majority, and supporters reached that threshold on Thursday. The bill passed 289-137.

If it came down to a veto override and all members voted, 290 would be needed to override Obama's veto, and the House missed that number by one vote Thursday. Forty-seven Democrats voted for the bill along with almost every Republican, though it's possible Democrats might vote differently if it ever came down to overriding Obama's veto.