Lowey statement at subcommittee markup of 2018 Homeland Security Appropriations bill
Thank you, Chairman Carter, Ranking Member Roybal-Allard, and Chairman Rogers for holding this markup today.
As I noted in this morning's full Committee markup, our budget and Appropriations process has been far from the 'regular order' that the majority has continually promised. A new bipartisan budget agreement must be negotiated in order to enact Appropriations bills into law.
With all of these procedural roadblocks hindering our path forward, one might think the majority would produce bills that could possibly gain support from Democrats, by for example, not funding a wasteful and useless border wall or a deportation force separating children from their families.
Yet that has not happened.
This bill before us provides some minority input, including the restoration of proposed cuts to FEMA grants, which are important to my home state of New York. However, this bill unacceptably provides significant increases to carry out the Administration’s draconian immigration enforcement priorities.
In a bill allocation that provides $1.9 billion over the current level, nearly $250 million more than President Trump’s request, and $1.6 billion federal dollars for the boondoggle of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, funds would be much better spent on other priorities. In this bill, more Science and Technology research funding could help secure us against cyber attacks we face every day, for example, and billions would be far better spent in other bills to help our children achieve their potential, rebuild trust between our communities and law enforcement, and help hard-working Americans achieve their small business goals.
Democrats are eager to support bills that include appropriate spending levels and are free from misguided, politically driven policies. I hope that as we move forward, the agencies tasked with vital security functions receive the resources they need to keep everyone, not just some in our communities, safe.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.