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Congressman Carter Praises Passage of Border Security Bill

Location: Washington, DC

December 17, 2005

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Congressman John Carter (TX-31) voted in favor of legislation that is critical to controlling our border and preventing terrorism. HR. 4437, the Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act is an important step in preventing illegal immigration, holding lawbreakers accountable, and protecting American citizens.

"Illegal immigration is undoubtedly the most important issue currently facing Texas. American taxpayers are picking up the bill for illegal immigrants visiting emergency rooms, schooling their children, and being incarcerated. Not to mention the serious dangers and costs associated with drug running, arms smuggling, and violence spilling over from Mexico border towns," Congressman Carter said. "Clearly, passage of this vital bill to address border security and illegal immigration in our country was desperately needed. This bill ensures tougher enforcement of our laws, stronger penalties, and a comprehensive plan to secure our borders."

Specifically, the bill requires the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the U.S. Department of Defense to develop a joint strategic plan that will provide the Border Patrol with military support and increased use of DOD surveillance. It also requires mandatory detention for all illegal immigrants who are apprehended at U.S. land borders attempting to cross illegally, by October 1, 2006. Additionally, the legislation provides employers with the tools to verify that their workers are legal, cracks down on alien gang members, and increases penalties for aliens re-entering illegally. The bill also includes an amendment introduced by Congressman Carter to enhance the communication capability of Border Patrol agents through satellite phones. Finally, the bill includes language requiring all Border Patrol agent uniforms be made in the United States.

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