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Border Security Conference Committee—During the shutdown, Democrats promised to negotiate border security as soon as the government reopened. With the government now reopened, the time to secure the border is now! On Wednesday, the House and Senate conference committee will convene to begin work on a DHS spending bill for the President to sign before funding expires on February 15.
Here are the four objectives that must be met by this committee:
- Secure our border by fully funding the President’s request for a border wall.
- Ensure we have the resources to enforce the laws already on the books by increasing the number of ICE officers, border patrol agents, prosecutors, and immigration court judges.
- Close loopholes that are being abused to skirt the law. We need to end sanctuary cities as well as the practice of catch-and-release.
- Make common-sense reforms to our immigration system, such as ending the unfair visa lottery and implementing a fair, merit-based system.
National Emergency Option—Should Congress fail to pass this bill, the President holds the power to declare a national emergency and fund the wall through untapped government funds. Two separate laws (10 USC 2808 and 33 USC 2293) authorize the President to utilize unobligated funds allocated to the Army Civil Works and the Department of Defense in the event of a national emergency.
While this is a viable option, we still believe that Congress has a responsibility to act on this matter and so we will be working closely with our allies on Capitol Hill for them to do their job first.
SENTINEL CALL TO ACTION: Our strategy to pressure moderate Democrats in red-leaning districts has been working. Thank you! Because of your activism, these targeted Democrats have been wavering on the issue and drifting away from Speaker Pelosi’s leadership. In our work with President Trump, Executive Director Tim Chapman and other conservative organizations met with White House officials on Monday to discuss our goals for immediate action on border security. Our presence and influence in Washington is made possible through your continued patriotism and outreach.
Heritage Action will be live-streaming the DHS conference committee on Wednesday and responding to the debate in real time on Twitter. We urge you to join the discussion and contact the committee members along with the moderate Democrats we have been reaching out to over the past few weeks. Click here for a list of those members and their DC office phone numbers.
H.R. 1—With Congress back in session, the Democrat-backed H.R. 1 stands to be a threat to our democracy if passed. This bill undermines our electoral system by eliminating voter integrity in the election process, read the bill text here. The Heritage Foundation’s Hans von Spakovsky testified to the Judiciary Committee today regarding this bill and he will speak to us next week about how we can fight back.
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