Recipient: U.S. House of Representatives
On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition of more than 200 national advocacy organizations, I am writing to urge you to oppose the rule providing for further consideration of H.R. 3219, the Make America Secure Appropriations Act of 2018. The rule being considered today includes a self-executing provision to add to the bill $1.6 billion in funding for wall construction at the southwest border. This provision is wasteful, unnecessary, would raise humanitarian and environmental concerns, and would make it more difficult to fix our broken immigration system.
While running for President, then-candidate Trump promised that Mexico would pay for a border wall. The American people now know that this is not true. Instead, Congress will be held to account if American taxpayer money is wasted on this construction. At a time when border apprehensions have hit historic lows over the past two decades, new border wall construction would put immigrant lives at greater risk, increase the risk of human trafficking, and disrupt the lives of border communities. At the same time, it would divert finite resources away from disaster relief, Coast Guard funding, and other programs that do promote national security.
Moreover, by depriving members of a separate up-or-down vote on this troubling provision, the rule amounts to an undemocratic end run around the lawmaking process. Representatives should not be forced to choose between voting on this unnecessary, wasteful provision and voting to fund other, less controversial national security funding.
For these reasons, I urge you to vote against the rule providing for further consideration of H.R. 3219. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or Rob Randhava, Senior Counsel, at 202-466-6058.
President & CEO