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Trump Keeps His Promise – Proposed House Spending Bill Includes Border Wall Funding

House Republicans included $1.6 billion in funding for President Donald Trump’s border wall in the new Homeland Security spending bill proposed Tuesday.

The 2018 Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill provides $44.3 billion to be used to fund a variety of federal security programs, including “aviation security, border and immigration enforcement, customs, cyberterrorism protection, drug smuggling prevention and natural disaster response,” the Washington Examiner said.

The measure specifically sets aside $1.6 billion for a “physical barrier construction along the U.S. southern border.”

“This funding bill provides the resources to begin building a wall along our southern border, enhance our existing border security infrastructure, hire more border patrol agents, and fund detention operations,” John Carter, R-Texas, chairman of the Homeland Security subcommittee.

“Additionally, this bill will increase funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, support grants in cases of emergency and natural disaster, and provide critical resources to protect our cyber networks,” he said.

Stephen Dinan of the Washington Times notes, “GOP leaders said the $1.6 billion fully meets Mr. Trump’s request to begin wall construction, which includes 32 miles of new border fencing in Texas, 28 miles of levee wall along the Rio Grande Valley, also in Texas, and 14 miles of replacement fence in San Diego.”

“The bill also adds 500 new Border Patrol agents, 1,000 more agents and officers for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement operations in the interior, and provides enough money to maintain 44,000 detention beds,” Dinan added.

“That’s a massive increase over the Obama years, and Trump officials said it will allow them to detain and deport illegal immigrants faster and with a higher success rate,” he wrote.

Mark Meadows, R-N.C., chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, said Monday that Republicans will block any spending bill should it fail to include funding for the border wall.

The chairman argued that border wall funding should be a top priority for Republicans for several reasons.

“One is it is a commitment that the president made to the American people and one that he intends on keeping, but the second part of that is for our national security we must secure our borders. And the American people will accept no less,” Meadows said.

Democrats have vowed to resist the new spending measure.

“Democrats will again draw a hard line against wasting taxpayer money to fulfill the president’s campaign applause line,” said Matthew Dennis, a spokesman for Appropriations Committee Democrats.

“The purpose of the Homeland Security bill is to make communities more safe and secure, and this pointless wall does nothing to accomplish that,” Dennis said.

The Homeland Security subcommittee will vote on the appropriations bill Wednesday.