The additional funds are being diverted from military spending
“[The Department of Homeland Security] has identified areas along the southern border of the United States that are being used by individuals, groups, and transnational criminal organizations as drug smuggling corridors, and determined that the construction of additional physical barriers and roads in the vicinity of the United States border is necessary in order to impede and deny drug smuggling activities.”
– Excerpt from the notice transmitted to Congress.
The Pentagon plans to divert $3.8 billion in military funding. The Department of Defense “reprogramming” notice says it plans to pull $2.2 billion from an account that funds counter-drug activities and another $1.6 billion from a war account known as the Overseas Contingency Operations fund.
The shifting of funds would have an impact on the purchase of new aircraft, vehicles and weapons — including Navy V-22 Osprey aircraft and parts for an Air Force reaper drone and F-35 planes.
The move got reactions from both sides of the aisle…
“The wall should be funded, but the funding must come through the Department of Homeland Security rather than diverting critical military resources that are needed and in law.
Congress has the constitutional responsibility to determine how defense dollars are spent. The re-programming announced today is contrary to Congress’s constitutional authority, and I believe that it requires Congress to take action. I will be working with my colleagues to determine the appropriate steps to take.”
– Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Tex
“Today’s reprogramming request confirms once again that the President is obsessed with fulfilling a campaign promise at the expense of our national security. This admin has already stolen billions from the DoD for the President’s vanity wall, and today they are doubling down.”
– Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash
“I unequivocally support President Trump’s efforts to secure our nation’s borders and support our men and women in uniform. Democrats have refused to work with us on border security, which has forced the President to redirect funds from other defense programs in the short term in order to secure the southern border.”
– Rep. Kay Granger, R-Tex
In other immigration related news…
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo went to the White House on Thursday to attempt to persuade President Trump to reverse a recent decision to boot New Yorkers from Global Entry and several other Trusted Traveler Programs due to his Green Light Law.
The Green Light Law allows illegal immigrants to obtain a drivers license and protects their information from immigration enforcement agencies.
Back in December just days prior to the new law going into effect, federal immigration and customs agencies all lost access to the New York DMV database.