This has been a confusing and contentious week for Congress. During a televised meeting last week with Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), President Trump demanded $5 billion for a border wall or he would shut down the government. Now that the Friday deadline to fund the government is drawing near, the White House has lost confidence in Congress to pass the President’s agenda and is now finding alternative methods to fund the wall.
The President has brought attention to the border crisis since he began campaigning for his current role as President. We have seen countless immigrants cross our borders without accountability. Two caravans with political agendas made their way to our border, but those are the only ones that were publicized. The truth is, caravan-equivalent numbers of immigrants cross our borders every day. As a result, criminal activity, such as drug and human trafficking has worsened. Not to mention the massive amount of taxpayer money that is being used to host these issues. This problem will not go away without the federal government addressing these issues.
Republicans offered a version of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) appropriations bill that contained $1.6 billion for fencing in the Rio Grande Valley and an additional $1 billion for the President’s immigration agenda. Even at half the amount that the President demanded, Democrats refused to pass it.
Unfortunately, Republicans are as much at fault as Democrats. For many conservative voters, the immigration problem took first-priority during the elections. They fully expected and demanded border wall funding over the past two years. There was an even bigger push for this before the November elections. However, Republican leadership turned a deaf ear and punted it until the last possible minute.
Now, Congress has settled for the idea of passing a Continuing Resolution which would keep funding levels the same. In the meantime, the President is finding funds within other agencies to secure our borders. There is one major hurdle, though Congress will need to approve any funds that would be reallocated for the wall. This will be problematic with Democrats holding the majority in the House.
Eagle Forum strongly advocates for additional border wall funding as well as more border security. We must protect American families across our nation.