DHS Secretary: ‘This Is Our Government’s Largest Investment in Border Security in 10 Years’
May 3, 2017 By Melanie Arter
(CNSNews.com) – Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said Tuesday that the FY17 omnibus spending bill, which provides his department with $42.4 billion in base discretionary spending, provides the “largest investment in border security in 10 years.”
“We’ve accomplished so much with the resources we already have. If I may remind you, apprehensions of illegal immigrants and criminals at the border are down significantly, but we need more to keep moving forward. This is our government’s largest investment in border security in 10 years,” Kelly said.
“In the past 100 days, we’ve been incredibly successful in enforcing the law and defending the nation. I believe this budget will help us begin to improve the way we do business and how we accomplish our goals to make this country more secure,” Kelly said.
“The department’s base discretionary budget authority is $42.4 billion. While we can never in my opinion invest too much in the security of our citizens and in our communities, we will be able to both sustain our critical security operations and make improvements that make us all safer,” he said.
“That includes hiring ICE agents, improving cyber security, funding grants that support state and local communities, and funding the Coast Guard operations at $344 million above the FY17 budget request,” Kelly said. “And as promised, the budget will secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws.
According to Kelly, border security includes three factors – people, technology, and infrastructure.
“This budget begins to provide all three. It will help us replace see-through steel wall along the southwest border. It will help us put more enforcement aircraft in the skies. It will help us deploy more technology to stop illegal activity crossing our borders,” he said.
Kelly said he was “shocked” at those in public service celebrating that they managed to reduce the money for a border wall, knowing that it will take longer to build and the border will be under “less control than it could be.”
“These appropriations provide us all an investment in the people, equipment and technology that helps our department protect the homeland. We face a variety of hazards with manmade and natural factors, and this budget begins to help us to confront them all,” Kelly said.
He said there are many in public service who owe the Border Patrol an apology – “and frankly, many in the media – for how they disrespect them, disrespect them for what they do and how they serve us everyday.”
Bill Funds Border Security–in Libya, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Egypt…
The 1,665-page spending bill the Republican-controlled Congress is planning to pass this week includes multiple measures that seemingly demonstrate a commitment to securing the border — in Libya, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon.
It does not include the $1.4 billion President Donald Trump requested to begin building the wall he promised to build along the U.S.-Mexico border.
But, the bill makes clear, Jordan’s border must be secured.
The section that appropriates money for the “Global War on Terrorism” provides: “That these funds may be used to support the Government of Jordan, in such amounts as the Secretary of Defense may determine, to enhance the ability of the armed forces of Jordan to increase or sustain security along its borders…”
Imagine if the part of the bill that appropriates money for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said: “That these funds may be used to support the Government of the United States, in such amounts as the Secretary of Homeland Security may determine, to enhance the ability of the Border Patrol to increase or sustain security along the southwestern border of the United States by building impenetrable walls along that border.”
Would that have been an outrage? Would it have justified Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer in leading a move to shut down the government of the United States to ensure no such walls were built?
Had the Republicans included money in the bill to fund Trump’s border wall, Schumer would have needed to explain to Americans why he is happy to spend their tax dollars to aid Jordan’s military in securing Jordan’s border while refusing to give the U.S. Border Patrol all the resources it needs — including walls — to secure the borders of the United States.
While the Republican leadership would not appropriate the $1.4 billion needed to start the wall at the U.S.-Mexico border, it is appropriating $1.3 billion for aid to Egypt. The bill even gives a special status to the part of this aid Egypt will use to secure its border.
“Of the funds appropriated by this Act under the heading ‘Foreign Military Financing Program,'” the bill says, “$1,300,000,000, to remain available until September 30, 2018, may be made available for assistance for Egypt.”
Fifteen percent of these foreign aid dollars, the bill says, can be withheld from Egypt if the secretary of state does not certify that Egypt’s government is “taking effective steps” to “advance democracy and human rights.”
But even if the secretary of state does not certify that Egypt is advancing democracy and human rights, it will not impact that part of U.S. aid to Egypt that is aimed at improving Egyptian border security.
The bill says: “That the certification requirement of this paragraph shall not apply to funds appropriated by this Act under such heading for counterterrorism, border security, and nonproliferation programs for Egypt.”
In the United States of America, the Bill of Rights still applies. But Congress has not ensured that our own border is secure.
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi argues it would be “immoral, expensive and unwise” to fund construction of a wall to protect this freedom-loving nation from those who try to cross our border in a calculated violation of the law. Does she, at the same time, think it is wise, moral and worth the cost to take money from Americans and give it to the government of Egypt to protect Egypt’s borders?
Under the terms of the funding bill, U.S. taxpayer money will also go to Ethiopia “for border security and counterterrorism programs.” It will go to the Lebanese Armed Forces “to professionalize the LAF and to strengthen border security and combat terrorism, including training and equipping the LAF to secure Lebanon’s borders.” It will go to Libya to “improve border security.” And it will go “to support programs to train border and customs officials in Pakistan and Afghanistan.”
But thanks to the deal that Republican and Democratic leaders made in Congress, it will not go to fund the border wall President Trump vowed to voters he would build if he were elected.
When Trump held a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday, the crowd chanted at him: “Build that wall! Build that wall! Build that wall!”
“Don’t worry, we’re going to have the wall,” he said. “Don’t worry about it.”
“We’ll build the wall, folks,” he said.
Whether Donald Trump does or does not build that wall will be a major measure of whether his presidency is a success or a failure.
Terence P. Jeffrey is the editor-in-chief of CNSnews.com.
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LIMBAUGH TO PENCE: ‘WHAT IS THE POINT OF VOTING REPUBLICAN IF THE DEMOCRATS ARE GOING TO CONTINUE TO WIN?’
Why vote Republican?
May 3, 2017 by Breitbart
Limbaugh asked the vice president what the “point” was of voting for Republicans if they were going to continue to give Democrats victories.
Partial transcript as follows:
LIMBAUGH: We welcome back to the program the vice president of the United States, Mike Pence. Welcome back, sir. Great to have you here with us today.
PENCE: Rush Limbaugh, it is an honor to be with you always. Thanks for having me on.
LIMBAUGH: If this is what happens, Mr. Vice President, why vote Republican? What is the point of voting Republican if the Democrats are gonna continue to win practically 95% of their objectives, such as in this last budget deal?
PENCE: Well, look, respectfully, Rush, I actually think this was, as the president said a little a while ago, I think this was actually a clear win for the American people. Look, you’ve had Washington, D.C., that has been, you know, paralyzed by gridlock and partisan infighting for many years, and in this new president you have someone who was able to bring people together and make a $21 billion increase in defense spending at a time of great challenge for America’s interests around the world. And that’s a — you know, he spoke about that today, surrounded by a lot of great members of the United States Air Force. And it was also a piece for years, Democrats in Washington insisted that any increase in defense spending would be matched with an increase in domestic spending.
So you gotta grow government at home if you’re gonna, you know, invest in our national defense. This ended that. I mean, in a very real sense this was a game-changer because we’re just back to putting the safety, security, and the national defense of the American people first, and I think it sends, having just traveled around the Asian-Pacific representing the president over the last couple of weeks, I think this sends a decisive message to the world that under President Trump’s leadership we’re gonna make the strongest military in history even stronger.
LIMBAUGH: If I’m the Democrats, $21 billion, 15 billion for defense that was not originally authorized, that’s a small price to pay for continuing to fund refugee resettlement, continuing to fund Planned Parenthood, continuing to fund sanctuary cities, continuing to fund the EPA, and not build the wall. The Democrats clearly think this is a big win, and they’re confident they can block Trump’s agenda after this spending bill for the rest of Trump’s term. There isn’t anything of the president’s agenda in this budget, and people are beginning to ask, when’s that gonna happen? If you’re gonna shut it down in September, why not now?
LIMBAUGH: If you complain about 60 votes today, why not go budget reconciliation for 51 votes and smoke ’em?
PENCE: Rush, Rush —
PENCE: Rush, let me be real clear. The number one priority of President Trump is to rebuild our military, to restore the arsenal of democracy. And I gotta tell you, to get Democrats in Washington, D.C., to agree to a $21 billion increase in a short-term budget bill — and, you know, the president’s calling for the largest increase in military spending since the Reagan administration in the upcoming budget, I think is no small — it’s no small accomplishment.