Police Weekby Representative John Ratcliffe
Posted on 2016-05-12
RATCLIFFE. Mr. Speaker, this is Police Week, a week which offers
all of us an opportunity to honor those who selflessly keep our
``To protect and serve,'' that is more than just a slogan on the side of police cars across the country. It is a promise, a promise that brave men and women in uniform keep every day as they uphold law and order in our cities and towns.
But to be able to protect and serve us, our law enforcement needs the tools and resources that are vital to successfully doing their job. And, unfortunately, some of that essential lifesaving equipment that they need to protect us and to protect themselves has been stripped away.
Last June, President Obama arbitrarily and unilaterally decided to limit the 1033 surplus equipment program, a Federal program that provides lifesaving Defense Department equipment to State and local law enforcement agencies.
Because of this ill-conceived action, I am hearing from the sheriffs, police chiefs, and law enforcement officials throughout the 18 counties that I am fortunate to represent. I am hearing about how the safety of the brave men and women in blue and their departments are being compromised by the President's action.
It is clear that the President's decision to unilaterally cut access to lifesaving equipment was a knee-jerk reaction that put politics in front of public safety, and that is something that we simply can't let happen.
So in response, Mr. Speaker, I have introduced the Protecting Lives Using Surplus Equipment Act to stop this action dead in its tracks and to ensure that any changes to this program are the result of a data- driven debate here in Congress, not through some arbitrary, unilateral action by the President.
So, Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to join me in standing up against this administration's attack on law enforcement safety by supporting my bill and making sure that our police have the equipment they need for their own safety and for the safety of the American people. They deserve nothing less.