Amendment Stripped that Would Have Mandated More Border Walls
Yesterday Congressional appropriators reportedly stripped an amendment from Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) that would have required the Department of Homeland Security to build more than 300 additional miles of wall along our southern border with Mexico. The amendment, which was added to the Senate Homeland Security appropriations bill, was taken out in conference between the House and the Senate. The measure was taken out because it was "cost-prohibitive and counterproductive to the Border Patrol's plan for securing the border," according to Rep. David Price (D-NC) who chairs the House Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee.
Considering that Homeland Security opposes the measure as well as the price tag of building the wall (estimated by the Government Accountability Office at $3.9 million per mile), cost-prohibitive and counterproductive it certainly would be.
Sierra Club helped lead a coalition of local elected officials and faith, human rights, and environmental organizations in opposition to the provision. The coalition also worked to support funding to monitor and mitigate impacts of border walls. The House included $40 million in their version of the bill to fund these efforts.
The final Homeland Security appropriations bill will likely become available to the public within the next week. It now heads back to the House and the Senate for final votes before moving to the President's desk.
Read the E & E Daily story.