The details on the new spending bill have been published and, if you're a fan of small government and fiscal conservatism, you're not gonna like it.
It's being called the Border Security Bill, which is ironic because many details of the budget have nothing to do with border security.
If approved, this would fill out the Federal government's budget for the rest of the fiscal year through October.
So what the heck is in it?
Here's a quick synopsis courtesy of Ryan James Girdusky:
- Democrats added lots of aid and welfare programs in the 2019 spending bill to support the growing number of economic migrants
- The Dems agreed to provide $1.375 billion for construction of a border wall.
- Trump cannot build any wall in the Santa Ana Wildlife Refuge, Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park, La Homita Park, the National Butterfly Center, or within or east of the Vista del Mar Ranch tract of Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge
- The $1.375 billion for constructing a "wall" is pedestrian fencing, not a real wall
- The bill includes $725 million for "technology" for border security
- The funds can only be used to make steel bollard designed barriers, no concrete walls and no prototypes. This is the same thing as what Bush and Obama built, just a little bit taller.
- The bill secures more than $3.1 billion in foreign health services, more than twice for the wall.
- The Sec. of DHS cannot increase border crossing fees
- Border "Wall" construction is only allowed in the Rio Grande Valley Sector
- The bill also includes: $415 million for humanitarian aide, $77 million for opioid equipment, & 1,200 new Customs and Border Patrol Agents
- The bill DOES expand Catch and Release by reducing the number of border beds from 49,060 to 40,520
- No funding for additional enforcement and removal field personnel. That means no more ICE agents to deport people already in the country.
- The Bill expands the Alternatives to Detention program from 82,000 to 100,000. Instead of housing family units at the border- they get moved into the interior where they almost always stay in the country permanently.
- The bill provides $40 million for additional ICE staffing dedicated to overall ATD case management, particularly for asylum seekers... so no new ICE agents, but money to ICE to help illegal aliens settle in a non-detention center in the country
- $1 billion for the Smithsonian
- $3.4 billion in refugee assistance - $74 million more than last year
- $4.4 billion in international disaster assistance - $100 million more than last year
- The bill does not eliminate any foundations that Trump wanted to get rid of including: The Asia Foundation, the U.S. African Development Foundation, the Inter-American Foundation, and the U.S. Trade and Development Agency
- Israel, Ukraine, and Jordan receive $5.3 billion
Once again this proves my point – the Tea Party is dead and fiscal conservatism is over.