Immigrant rights advocates on Monday denounced Democrats for reportedly agreeing to $1.375 billion in funding for President Donald Trump's border wall obsession and called on lawmakers to speak out against the agreement.
Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas) called for fellow members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to completely reject funding the wall.
"Otherwise, why even exist?" the congressman tweeted. "It's time to stand up for border communities!"
Congressional Hispanic Caucus members! Reject 1.3 BILLION more in border wall funding! Otherwise, why even exist? It’s time to stand up for border communities!— US Rep. Filemon Vela (@RepFilemonVela) December 16, 2019
The spending bill was agreed to last week after negotiations between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, House Appropriations Chairwoman Rep. Nita M. Lowey (D-N.Y.), and Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.).
It was bad last week when Pelosi gave 2 press conferences: 1 announcing articles of impeachment against Trump, then 1 announcing a trade deal with Trump. This week, Dems will vote to impeach Trump— Sam Sacks (@SamSacks) December 16, 2019
& vote to give him $1 billion+ for his racist border wall. https://t.co/VfLaaPskp2
According to Politico, the border wall funding represents a compromise of sorts:
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Money for the U.S.-Mexico barrier will stay static during the current fiscal year, at about $1.4 billion, rather than the president's request for $8.6 billion. Budgets for the nation's two immigration enforcement agencies—Customs and Border Protection, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement—are also largely flat-lined.
Journalist David Dayen, noting that Trump can easily find more funding for the wall by moving money around, was nonetheless confused by Democrats giving the president a win.
"What's the rationale to make things easier on Trump here?" wondered Dayen.
BREAKING: Congress set to debut $1.4T spending deal that sidesteps a border wall funding fight, funds gun violence research for the first time in 20 years, repeals 3 major health insurance taxes and maintains the same number of ICE detention beds.— Caitlin Emma (@caitlinzemma) December 16, 2019
Though the border wall spending is far less than the $5 billion the president wanted, opponents of Trump's immigration policies took issue with funding the wall at all.
News of the spending bill's border wall provision provoked groans from progressives on social media.
"Hell of an opposition party Trump has to face," journalist James Fredrik said sarcastically.