Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2015by Representative Bennie G. Thompson
Posted on 2015-01-13
THOMPSON of Mississippi. Mr. Chair, I thank the Gentlewoman from
New York, Ms. Lowey, for yielding me time.
Mr. Chair, I rise to voice my opposition to the anti-immigration amendments that will be considered later this afternoon.
These poison-pill amendments were not drafted with an eye toward making our nation safer, but rather scoring political points against the President.
As Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, I am disturbed that some of my colleagues are willing to play partisan politics with national security.
[[Page H341]] Over the past month, we have seen major cyber-attacks at American companies and radicalized terrorists wreak havoc on the streets of Sydney and Paris.
Yet the amendments the Majority insists on attaching to DHS' funding bill have nothing to do with cybersecurity.
And they have nothing to do with keeping Americans safe from lone- wolf terrorists or other radicalized individuals.
Rather, the amendments are being considered to satisfy the far-right fringe contingency of the Republican Party who have amassed disproportionate influence over the past few years.
The Amendments we are considering today could force DHS to use its limited resources to remove law-abiding children brought to the country through no fault of their own before deporting those who pose a threat to our safety or security.
Similarly, the Blackburn Amendment would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, setting in motion the deportation of those who have already come forward, paid the relevant fees and submitted to background checks, from America--the only home most of them have ever known.
In light of global terrorist events that occurred in recent months, the notion that we would remove individuals--who are known to, and have been vetted by, DHS--before focusing on those who may do us harm runs counter to common-sense and contradicts our risk-based approach to homeland security.
I urge my colleagues to reject the anti-immigration amendments that will be considered later this afternoon.
Instead, we should be voting on a clean DHS funding bill.