House Republicans Must Unite Behind Spending Agreement and then Pivot to Homeland Security Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Immigration Center for Enforcement (NICE), along with an assembled coalition of prominent groups and former agency officials, recently called on House Republicans to attach their historic border security measure to any spending agreement to avert a government shutdown. A group of Republicans answered the coalition’s bold call to action, unveiling a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the federal government and end the border crisis.

The CR includes nearly every provision from the House-passed Secure the Border Act (H.R. 2), as well as riders designed to prohibit federal funds for radical agency maneuvers including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) memos that severely limit interior enforcement. H.R. 2 remains the only solution to truly address the border crisis. It would close asylum loopholes, end “catch-and-release,” stop unlawful abuse of parole, expand penalties for visa overstays, and close longstanding loopholes in the processing of both accompanied and unaccompanied alien children. The bill also resumes construction of the border wall and prohibits the Biden Administration’s reliance on non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to process, transport, and provide social services to illegal aliens.

House Republicans have a clear choice this week: Try to truly secure the border by voting for a CR that contains nearly all of H.R. 2 and strong immigration policy riders, or inadvertently grease the wheels for a ‘clean’ CR that will allow a historic crisis to get even worse. If the existing CR passes the House, then the Senate and White House must decide: Do we want to shut down the border crisis and fund the government or shut down the government in order to keep the border wide open?

After CR passage, House Republicans must pivot toward advancing the strong Department of Homeland Security (DHS) appropriations bill in adherence to regular order. The bill, which is currently awaiting floor consideration in the House Rules Committee, ramps up interior enforcement by:

  • Providing $3.5 billion for custody operations, the highest total ever appropriated, to fund an average daily ICE detainee population of 41,500. This funding is critical to deter illegal entry and support additional interior enforcement actions.
  • Providing $655 million to fund transportation and removal operations for illegal aliens, a critical ICE function that has dramatically decreased under the Biden Administration.
  • Prohibiting funds for implementing radical ICE enforcement memos, which encourage improper use of prosecutorial discretion.
  • Prohibiting illegal aliens from being transferred to the interior of the country.
  • Ensuring that illegal aliens who are not detained by ICE are properly monitored with GPS tracking from the first encounter through the end of immigration proceedings.

The DHS appropriations bill does much, much more, also cutting wasteful spending and rescinding improperly allocated funds. It is time to strengthen it, then get it across the finish line – the clock is ticking.

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