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Public Statements

Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2012

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT

Mr. POE of Texas. I move to strike the last word.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, Federal public lands have become the chosen path for drug smugglers and illegals entering our United States of America. The Government Accountability Office has confirmed that certain environmental laws, such as the Wilderness Act and Endangered Species Act, limit the Border Patrol's access and expose great areas of the border to significant environmental damage due to the illegal traffic coming into the United States.

In certain areas, Border Patrol agents are limited to patrolling on foot or on horseback even if the drug runners have ATVs, 4x4 trucks, or even Humvees.

A recent GAO report revealed that the Department of the Interior is taking months to approve simple permits that are necessary for the Border Patrol to do its job to protect the border. The GAO report also revealed that some permits are never granted at all.

When permits are given to the Border Patrol for such things as placing monitor equipment, the Department of the Interior negotiates mitigation packages with the Border Patrol. But these mitigation packages are forcing the Border Patrol to fork over money for environmental activities. The obvious is being missed by the Department of the Interior that the illegal activity itself destroys the environment they are trying to preserve.

I recommend adoption of the Lummis amendment.

I yield back the balance of my time.

The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from Wyoming (Mrs. Lummis).

The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the ayes appeared to have it.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.

The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from Wyoming will be postponed.

The Clerk will read.

The Clerk read as follows:

Sec. 548. Of the funds transferred to the Department of Homeland Security when it was created in 2003, the following funds are hereby rescinded from the following accounts and programs in the specified amounts:

(1) $20,997,225 from ``U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Salaries and Expenses''; and

(2) $594,945 from ``Violent Crime Reduction Programs''.

Sec. 549. Of the following unobligated balances available for ``Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Construction'', $11,300,000 is rescinded.

AMENDMENT OFFERED BY MR. RICHMOND

Mr. RICHMOND. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.

The Clerk read as follows:

Page 91, after line 10, insert the following:

Sec. __. (a) In this section, the term ``covered assistance'' means assistance provided--

(1) under section 408 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5174); and

(2) in relation to a major disaster declared by the President under section 401 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5170) during the period beginning on August 28, 2005 and ending on December 31, 2010.

(b) The Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency--

(1) subject to paragraph (2), shall waive a debt owed to the United States relating to covered assistance provided to an individual or household if--

(A) the covered assistance was distributed based on an error by the Federal Emergency Management Agency; and

(B) there was no fault on behalf of the debtor; or

(C) the collection of the debt will create a demonstrable financial burden on the debtor; and

(2) shall not waive a debt under paragraph (1) if the debt involves fraud, the presentation of a false claim, or misrepresentation by the debtor or any party having an interest in the claim.

Mr. RICHMOND (during the reading). I ask unanimous consent that we suspend the reading.

The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from Louisiana?

There was no objection.

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I respectfully reserve a point of order on this amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Alabama reserves a point of order.

The gentleman from Louisiana is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. RICHMOND. Madam Chair, what this amendment would do is, under the provisions of the Stafford Act, the Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, there are approximately 160,000 American citizens across this country who, in the aftermath of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Ike, and Gustav, received disaster benefits through an error by our Federal Emergency Management Agency.

What the government is attempting to do now, almost 5 1/2 , 6 years later, is to go back and recoup those funds which were not gained by any American citizen through fraud or theft or deceit. It was a valid application on their part on which our FEMA agency made a mistake.

Madam Chair, just in these economic times we ought not, as government, go back and penalize citizens 6 years after government made an error that gave them disaster relief funds in the aftermath of the worst natural disaster that we faced in this country's history.

So what this amendment does is it simply says that the government should not do it and that we will not go back and try to recoup from the 160,000 American citizens that are spread out through Texas, through Louisiana, through Alabama and through Mississippi those funds. That is simply all it does, and I would ask that we support it.

I yield back the balance of my time.

POINT OF ORDER

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chairman, I insist upon my point of order.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his point of order.

Mr. ADERHOLT. I make a point of order against the amendment because it proposes to change existing law and constitutes legislation in an appropriation bill and therefore violates clause 2 of rule XXI. The rule states, in pertinent part, an amendment to a general appropriation bill shall not be in order if changing existing law gives affirmative action in effect.

I ask for a ruling from the Chair.

The Acting CHAIR. Does any other Member wish to be heard on the point of order? If not, the Chair will rule.

The Chair finds that this amendment includes language imparting direction. The amendment therefore constitutes legislation in violation of clause 2 of rule XXI. The point of order is sustained, and the amendment is not in order.

The Clerk will read.

The Clerk read as follows:

TITLE VI

EMERGENCY SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDING FOR DISASTER RELIEF

(INCLUDING RESCISSION AND TRANSFER OF FUNDS)

Sec. 601. Effective on the date of the enactment of this Act, of the unobligated balances remaining available to the Department of Energy pursuant to section 129 of the Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2009 (division A of Public Law 110-329), $500,000,000 is rescinded and $1,000,000,000 is hereby transferred to and merged with ``Department of Homeland Security--Federal Emergency Management Agency--Disaster Relief'': Provided, That the amount transferred by this section is designated as an emergency pursuant to section 3(c)(1) of H. Res. 5 (112th Congress).

TITLE VII

SPENDING REDUCTION ACCOUNT

Sec. 701. The amount by which the applicable allocation of new budget authority made by the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives under section 302(b) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 exceeds the amount of proposed new budget authority is $0.

AMENDMENT NO. 1 OFFERED BY MR. CARTER

Mr. CARTER. Madam Chairman, I offer an amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.

The text of the amendment is as follows:

At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:

Sec. __. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used for the Climate Change Adaptation Task Force of the Department of Homeland Security.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. CARTER. Madam Chairman, I rise today to offer an amendment
which would strip funds allowed to the Department of Homeland Security Climate Change Adaptation Task Force. The U.S. Government has no shortage of agencies dedicated to studying global climate change and its impact.

For fiscal year 2011, the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, has a budget of $6.6 billion and identifies taking action on climate change as their number one goal in its fiscal year 2011 through 2015 strategic plan. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA, which among other things is charged with climate monitoring, has a budget of $5.6 billion for fiscal year 2011.

So why is Secretary Napolitano--why, at a time when our Nation is running a public debt of over $14 trillion, should the Department of Homeland Security be spending money on a Climate Change Adaptation Task Force?

Millions of pounds of illegal drugs are trafficked across our border each year. On May 9, 12 suspected members of the infamous Zeta drug cartel and one Mexican marine were killed in a shootout on Falcon Lake along the Texas-Mexico border, the same lake where a U.S. citizen was shot and killed by pirates while boating last September.

An untold number of men, women, and children are trafficked across our border for both sexual and labor exploitation, which is equivalent to modern-day slavery. Additional intelligence recovered from Osama bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, revealed that al Qaeda was considering launching attacks on U.S. trains and subway stations.

Last October, two packages containing explosives were shipped from Yemen addressed to Chicago-area synagogues, and they were discovered on an air cargo plane. A vast network of computers and operating systems which our government and economy relies on to operate every day is under threat from cyberattacks originating from countries such as Russia and China.

These are the priorities that the Secretary should be focusing on, not wasting time duplicating the work of the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The Secretary's Climate Change Adaptation Task Force is a waste of time and resources. And those resources should be devoted to securing our borders and ensuring the safety of our homeland.

I urge my colleagues to support this amendment.

I yield back the balance of my time.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Madam Chairman, I was intrigued with this amendment. I didn't quite understand the import of it. So I have done a little research, talked to the Department of Homeland Security about the extent of their activities with this task force and what the affect of this amendment might be. So I would like to offer a little reality check here and suggest that this amendment is not merited.

This amendment, for starters, will not save any money. It simply prohibits the Department of Homeland Security and its employees from, in any way, planning for the effects of climate change.

Now the debate isn't about whether or not one believes that climate change is being caused by human beings. The fact is that whatever the cause, climate change is occurring in certain parts of the world. Both the U.S. Coast Guard and the Navy have testified before congressional committees that their operations are greatly affected, particularly in the Arctic region.

The Department of Homeland Security has identified other specific climate change-related impacts on DHS missions. These include, as you might expect, disaster response activities and the protection of critical infrastructure.

Now given the historic flooding that's occurred along the Mississippi as well as the worst tornado season we've experienced since 1950 with over 1,200 tornadoes and 500 deaths, it's understandable that DHS might just want the best available information on climate change.

Now I want to clarify any misinformation here. There are no DHS employees nor are any DHS funds dedicated full-time to climate change. One person at the department has spent a limited amount of time representing DHS at these task force meetings and activities--one person. So prohibiting funds going toward this effort is not going to save any money.

But there are several DHS components, including FEMA and the Coast Guard, that have been able to leverage cross-government expertise from the task force on both climate issues and on long-range planning generally. I would think that's exactly what they should do.

So what this amendment would do, rather than saving any money, it would simply prevent DHS persons from meeting or even talking to each other regarding the task force.

Now it's prudent and necessary for DHS to be able to work with its partner agencies to plan for the effects of climate change on their missions, and it's proper and important that our government agencies be able to talk to each other about the changes they are witnessing and the accommodations to their missions that might need to be made.

So, Madam Chairman, again, the Carter amendment will not save one dollar. Instead, it will prevent DHS from engaging in contingency planning with partner agencies across government. This is a debate, if it's about anything, it's about ensuring good government and intelligent planning and responsible coordination.

I urge my colleagues to vote against the amendment.

I yield back the balance of my time.

Mr. DICKS. I rise in opposition to the amendment, and move to strike the requisite number of words.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Washington is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. DICKS. I again want to compliment the ranking member for his lucid description of the Department of Homeland Security's work on climate change.

We have had a weather season that has been extraordinary. Whether this climate change that we're experiencing is caused by humans or if it's just happening, either way, the Department of Homeland Security should be engaged in the interagency efforts to find out what we can do to minimize and adapt to the climate change. This affects weather. We've seen the storms that have been mentioned. It also affects the northern latitudes where we are seeing the polar ice melting, so the Coast Guard is going to have more responsibility to go into those areas because other countries are trying to exploit this.

I would just say to the gentleman, if there is only one person working part time on this, I don't see a reason to prohibit it, and I would urge the gentleman to withdraw his amendment.

Mr. CARTER. Will the gentleman yield?

Mr. DICKS. Certainly, I yield to the gentleman from Texas.

Mr. CARTER. I may have misunderstood Mr. Price; but I believe he said there was one person who had gone to the meeting of the task force, which included FEMA and the Coast Guard.

Is that what you said?

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Yes, FEMA and the Coast Guard.

Mr. CARTER. Aren't FEMA and the Coast Guard part of the Department of Homeland Security?

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Yes.

Mr. CARTER. So there is more than one person for sure, and if it is so negligible and of no consequence----

Mr. DICKS. Then why bar it?

Mr. CARTER. I don't understand why you won't accept the amendment.

Mr. DICKS. Because it would bar the department from even discussing it with anybody. I think it is so shortsighted. This is a national security issue.

The Navy is now looking at the coastal areas. As the seas rise, it's going to affect Navy installations all over this country. I brought in the Park Service when I was chairman of the Interior. I brought in the Forest Service, the Fish and Wildlife Service. They all see the effects. We have a longer fire season.

This is something you can't ignore. This is a national issue that is significant, so to have a Department of Homeland Security that isn't going to
look at the consequences of climate change after what we've seen this year is just ridiculous on the face of it.

Mr. CARTER. Let me point out that I did not ask that the department not look into climate change. I asked that we take any funds that are allocated to the Department of Homeland Security's Climate Change Adaptation Task Force. If there is no such task force, there is none. I believe there is, but if there is none, then there is none. I'm not saying they can't talk about climate change.

In addition, I named two agencies that are spending close to $15 billion in studying climate change. You, in addition, named the Navy, and you named other agencies that are looking into it. All of these agencies are spending tons of money. So why can't we get information from those people? Why do we have to go off and spend money, which we desperately need on our borders in order to protect ourselves from the real terrible violence that is slaughtering people on the Mexican border, on something for which you named five different groups that are studying it and for which I named two additional? Explain that to me.

Mr. DICKS. Why can't Homeland Security, with the Coast Guard and FEMA and all of these organizations, be part of the interagency effort? They're not wasting money on this. This is important research.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Will the gentleman yield?

Mr. DICKS. Yes, I yield to the gentleman.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Is it actually less efficient to shut off this kind of interagency discussion and to say that the representative from FEMA or the Coast Guard simply can't participate and that they have to reinvent the wheel? I simply don't understand the rationale, when interagency work is going on and when it has the potential to inform Homeland Security's work, why they shouldn't take advantage of that.

Mr. DICKS. Again, FEMA responds to weather disasters, so they have got to be involved in the task force that is looking at climate change. I just can't believe that the gentleman really wants to do this.

Mr. CARTER. Will the gentleman yield?

Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman from Texas.

Mr. CARTER. NOAA is the Weather Bureau. They're the weather folks who are studying this thing. They've got $5.6 billion to study it. I'm not asking for the world. If you'll recall, the last time you all were in charge, you took a spy satellite or two, moved them out of Afghanistan, and put them over the roles in order to study the roles.

The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.

The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Carter).

The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the ayes appeared to have it.

Mr. PRICE of North Carolina. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.

The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Texas will be postponed.

AMENDMENT NO. 9 OFFERED BY MR. POE OF TEXAS

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.

The text of the amendment is as follows:

At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:

Sec. __. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to provide assistance to a State or local government entity or official that is in violation of section 642(a) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1373(a)).

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I reserve a point of order.

The Acting CHAIR. A point of order is reserved.

The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, it has recently come to light that, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the Department of Homeland Security granted deferred action to over 12,000 illegal aliens in FY 2010. ``Deferred action'' is a technical term which means that a person is subject to deportation but that our Federal Government, the administration, decides not to deport them at all, calling it ``deferred action.''

This number is a dramatic increase from previous years. It's much higher than the less than 900 number that was recently quoted by Secretary Napolitano in testimony during a Senate Judiciary hearing. These numbers also seem to drastically contradict statements made by the administration that deferred action would not be used to provide a backdoor amnesty to illegal immigrants.

In short, deferred action is an exercise of prosecutorial discretion, and that discretion is not to pursue removal from the United States of a particular individual for a specific period of time. It is only intended to be used on very special occasions; but now over 12,000 people a year are given this deferred action.

Our broken immigration system in this country continues to allow hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants in each year. Increasingly, deferred action is being used as an easy way for the Federal Government to avoid enforcing the law for people who are arrested and caught in the United States illegally. Quite simply, it is illegal to be in this country without permission, and it is the responsibility of the Federal Government to enforce the immigration laws of this country at all times, not to pick and choose when to enforce certain laws, especially immigration laws.

This amendment states that no money from this bill can be used to grant deferred action or parole to an illegal in the United States for any other reason than a case-by-case basis for one of two reasons: one, urgent humanitarian reasons or, two, significant public benefit.

Bottom line, this amendment prevents the administration from going around Congress and the will of the American people by granting administrative amnesty called ``deferred action.''

I yield back the balance of my time.

PARLIAMENTARY INQUIRY

Mr. ADERHOLT. Parliamentary inquiry, Madam Chair.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his inquiry.

Mr. ADERHOLT. We would like to clarify which amendment is currently being considered.

The Acting CHAIR. Amendment No. 9.

Mr. ADERHOLT. I ask unanimous consent that the Clerk read the amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the Clerk will report the amendment.

There was no objection.

POINT OF ORDER

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I insist on my point of order.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his point of order.

Mr. ADERHOLT. I make a point of order against the amendment because it proposes to change existing law and constitutes legislation in an appropriation bill and, therefore, violates clause 2 of rule XXI. The rule states in pertinent part: an amendment to a general appropriation bill shall not be in order if changing existing law imposes additional duties.

I ask for a ruling from the Chair.

The Acting CHAIR. Does any Member wish to be heard on the gentleman's point of order?

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, I wish to be heard.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized on the point of order.

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, this is the amendment that I mentioned to the majority that I was going to introduce at this time, and it is in order because it is No. 9, which was stated to me by the Clerk as No. 9. So it is in order.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk has read amendment No. 9, and the Chair will rule on amendment No. 9.

The Chair finds that this amendment includes language imparting direction. The amendment therefore constitutes legislation in violation of clause 2 of rule XXI.

The point of order is sustained, and the amendment is not in order.

AMENDMENT NO. 10 OFFERED BY MR. POE OF TEXAS

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk. The
title of the amendment is Sanctuary Cities amendment. I have it as No. 10.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.

The text of the amendment is as follows:

At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:

Sec. __. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used in contravention of section 642(a) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1373(a)).

Mr. POE of Texas. I would like the amendment read.

The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the Clerk will report the amendment.

There was no objection.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chair, over the past years, the number of aliens who unlawfully reside in the United States has grown significantly, from an estimated 3 million in 1986, to about 11 million in 2005; and some put those estimates today in 2010 at 20 million.

It is estimated that 400,000 illegal immigrants entered our country last year. Even modest estimates put the cost of illegal immigration to just the Federal Government at over $29 billion each year. That is roughly the annual budget for the entire Department of Justice, and we cannot afford to have this continue.

Some jurisdictions have assisted Federal authorities in apprehending and detaining unauthorized aliens pursuant to agreements called the 287(g) agreements, with Federal immigration authorities enabling respective State or local law enforcement agencies to carry out various immigration enforcement functions, and I commend these jurisdictions.

However, there are some jurisdictions that continue to mandate that their employees not communicate with ICE when they come across someone that is in the country illegally. These jurisdictions are known as sanctuary cities and are located throughout the United States. This practice is against the law, and it is in violation of current law which is 8 U.S.C. 1373.

However, despite the law, many cities and localities still place these restrictions on law enforcement officers and other employees. 8 U.S.C. 1373 states: notwithstanding any other provision of Federal, State, or local law, a Federal, State, or local government entity or official may not prohibit or in any way restrict any government entity or official from sending to or receiving from the Immigration and Naturalization Service, now called ICE, information regarding the citizenship or immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual.

Once again, Madam Chair, this is current U.S. Federal law. This amendment is simple. It says that no funds from this act can be used to contradict current U.S. law, which I just read.

This amendment should pass unanimously because it already is against the law for cities and other jurisdictions to prevent law enforcement officers and other employees from sharing information with ICE. All this amendment is doing is saying that no money from this act can go to support an already illegal activity. It is a commonsense amendment. I urge support of the amendment.

I yield back the balance of my time.

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I appreciate the concerns of the gentleman from Texas. This amendment supports existing law, and we accept this amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Poe).

The amendment was agreed to.

AMENDMENT OFFERED BY MR. RICHMOND

Mr. RICHMOND. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.

The Clerk read as follows:

At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:

SEC. __. Any appropriation for fiscal year 2011 for disaster assistance that includes an emergency designation pursuant to section 3(c) (1) of H. Res. 5 (112th Congress) shall not be required by any rule or policy to be accompanied by a budgetary offset.

Mr. RICHMOND (during the reading). Madam Chair, I ask unanimous consent to dispense with the reading.

The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from Louisiana?

There was no objection.

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I reserve a point of order on the gentleman's amendment.

The Acting CHAIR. A point of order is reserved.

The gentleman from Louisiana is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. RICHMOND. Madam Chair, to my colleagues on the other side of the aisle and on the same side of the aisle, I rise today to do two things. One is to thank the American people, thank Congress, and thank two Presidents for the assistance that they gave to the gulf coast after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and even after the BP oil spill.

But at the same time, I rise because just in the last 2 months, President Obama has issued 27 disaster and emergency declarations across 18 States. And the fact that this Congress and the last Congress was able to help the citizens of the gulf coast gave great comfort to Americans to know that this government would not let them fend for themselves when a natural disaster hits.

However, under the policies of this Congress, we have decided that any disaster assistance would require a pay-for. That would leave a large number of our American taxpaying citizens out to fend for themselves when they simply cannot do it.

So when we look at the tornadoes and we look at the flooding that has occurred in the last 2 months--and we are talking about States like Minnesota, Tennessee, Arkansas, Georgia, Missouri, Mississippi, Louisiana--I think it should be the policy of this body that we are going to be wherever our citizens need us.

If you look at the fund which FEMA uses to pay for disaster response recovery and mitigation projects, it is facing a $1 billion shortfall this fiscal year. If you look at the entire hole, the hole is much bigger. You are talking at least a $3 billion hole for the fiscal year 2012. That does not even include estimates of the incidents and the disasters that I talked about earlier, the mini-tornadoes and the massive flooding that we have incurred in the last 2 months. That is worrisome, but let's take it a step forward.

Let's assume, or even not assume, but there is a possibility that we would see another event similar to the flooding, similar to a hurricane. Hurricane season started June 1, and I think that it is absolutely irresponsible for us to tell the American people, it is disingenuous, it is wrong, it is sinful to say we are not going to help you if we don't cut the budget somewhere else. We have not done that in the past, and I don't think we should do it now.

The great thing for me today, I get to stand up here as a person whose district benefited tremendously from the fact that we have water diversions on the Mississippi. And in order to save Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and New Orleans, Louisiana, we opened those diversions which flooded small towns and small farmers, and that happened up and down the Mississippi River.

So I stand here today as a beneficiary of other people's flooding and other people's destruction that they suffered. And I stand here today as someone who has not suffered a lot saying that the government was there for me when Katrina and Rita hit, and the government should be there for the people of Mississippi, Minnesota, Georgia, Missouri, Texas, Louisiana, and everywhere that the tornadoes hit.

So this amendment simply does what I think is the fair thing to do, a consistent thing to do, and something that's deeply rooted in our American history, and that is to help people that can't help themselves.

And I would just simply ask both sides of the aisle to join together in unity and let the people of this country know that if a tornado knocks down your house through no fault of your own, we're going to be there to help you. No matter if other administrations have squandered and spent money that has left us in a deficit, we will still be there to help you.

I yield back the balance of my time.

POINT OF ORDER

Mr. ADERHOLT. Madam Chair, I insist on my point of order.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman will state his point of order.

Mr. ADERHOLT. I make a point of order against the amendment because
it proposes to change existing law and constitutes legislation in an appropriation bill and therefore violates clause 2 of rule XXI.

The rule states in pertinent part: An amendment to a general appropriation bill shall not be in order if it changes the application of existing law. The amendment changes the application of existing law.

I ask for a ruling from the Chair.

The Acting CHAIR. Does any Member wish to be heard on the point of order?

If not, the Chair is prepared to rule.

The Chair finds that this amendment changes the application of existing law. The amendment therefore constitutes legislation in violation of clause 2 of rule XXI.

The point of order is sustained, and the amendment is not in order.

AMENDMENT OFFERED BY MR. POE OF TEXAS

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.

The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.

The Clerk read as follows:

At the end of the bill (before the short title), insert the following:

Sec. __. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used to to parole an alien into the United States, or grant deferred action of a final order of removal, for any reason other than on a case-by-case basis for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefit.

The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.

Mr. POE of Texas. Madam Chairman, what is taking place is under the guise of granting deferred action. Deferred action is a procedure, an administrative procedure by the administration that is used when a person is detained who is illegally in the United States and the action to deport that individual is deferred to some unknown date. The person is released, and what occurs is that person is never deported and never has a hearing.

This procedure started years ago with a few hundred people a year. But last year, in 2010, over 12,000 people had their immigration deportation hearings deferred to an unknown date, and what occurred was they were released and their action against them will never be taken. Some call this a form of amnesty, administrative amnesty. You can call it whatever you want, but those people stay in the United States.

What this amendment does is prohibit the administration from using, under the guise of deferred action, this procedure to not have hearings on individuals, which allows them to end up staying in the United States. And no funds can be used to implement the verdict action except in two cases: One is under humanitarian reasons, and the second would be some significant public benefit to the United States. Otherwise, no deferred action, no get-out-of-jail-free card for people on a discriminatory basis done by the administration or any of its agencies.

BREAK IN TRANSCRIPT


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