On Thursday March 16th, the White House requested $3 billion dollars as the first down-payment on Trump’s executive orders to implement his mass deportation agenda. Without this funding, there is no money for a wall, new Border Patrol and ICE agents, and more detention facilities that fuel the private prison industry. Together we must tell Congress to cut off the funding, and say NO to using our taxpayer dollars for Trump’s wall, deportation force and detention camps.
On Thursday, March 16, the White House officially requested “supplemental” funding for fiscal year 2017 (which ends on September 30, 2017) to recoup cost overages from the increase in border numbers at the end of last year and request NEW funding to begin to implement Trump’s immigration executive orders. This request is part of a larger supplemental request with the Department of Defense that totals $30 billion.
The $3 billion requested for fiscal year 2017 is just a fraction of what is required to fund Trump’s executive orders. The DHS internal estimate of the wall alone is $21.6 billion. Already, Trump has asked for approximately $4.5 billion in additional money for his executive orders in fiscal year 2018.
Without initial funds in fiscal year 2017, President Trump cannot begin to implement his immigration Executive Orders and mass deportation agenda. This supplemental bill is the first time Congress will consider whether or not to use taxpayer dollars to fund President Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda. In order to pass the Senate, the bill needs 60 votes- 8 Democratic votes and all 52 Republican votes. Will Democrats and Republicans stand up against his hate and cut off the funding, or be complicit in his terror? We expect a vote in April.
$3 Billion for More Detention, Deportations and a Border Wall
- $1.4 billion to construct the border wall, which both Democrats and Republicans have criticized as a waste of taxpayer dollars.
- $1.2 billion for more detention facilities which will fuel the private prison industry without addressing documented abuses in these facilities.
- Increased detention capacity up to an unprecedented 45,700 beds. Over the last year, detention has increased way beyond the appropriated level of 34,000 beds without corresponding oversight and improvements in facilities.
- Preparations to hire 1,000 ICE agents in 2018 so more ICE agents will roam communities – including churches and courthouses – apprehending immigrants.
- Preparations to hire 500 more Border Patrol agents in fiscal year 2018 even though apprehensions at the southern border are at all-time lows and DHS doesn’t meet existing hiring goals because many applicants fail their polygraph tests.
Instead of pursuing an unpopular, ineffective, and unnecessary border wall and writing a blank check to the private prison industry, the Trump administration could be investing in programs that help everyday Americans such as:
- Creating 45,000 new middle-class jobs as a result of investments in infrastructure, at a cost of roughly $66,667 each.
- Building 184 new elementary schools, at a cost of roughly $16.3 million each.
- Hiring just over 55,000 new kindergarten and elementary school teachers, at an annual salary of $54,500 each.
- Paying for nearly 311,000 people to attend a four-year college per year, at an in-state tuition rate of $9,650.
- Providing $10,000 in subsidies to defer the costs of child care for 300,000 working class families.
- Providing nearly 337,000 Head Start slots for children, at a cost of roughly $8,911 each.
- Helping states protect and save up to 12,000 at-risk wildlife and plant species in the U.S. every year for the next 2.3 years.
- Providing nearly 2.1 million households with solar energy, at a cost of $1,437 each.
- Weatherizing just over 460,000 homes nationwide, which would save the average household $283 per year.
- Providing 10 million life-saving HIV/AIDS treatments under the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR, program, at a cost of roughly $300 each.