Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives passed five critical, bipartisan Homeland Security bills. The legislation will help the Department of Homeland Security protect the border, foster better intelligence and information sharing, and provide greater access to employment opportunities for veterans. Three of these bills were sponsored by House Democrats, including Committee on Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security Ranking Member Henry Cuellar (D-TX). The five bipartisan bills are:
* H.R. 915 - The Jaime Zapata Border Security Task Force Act - Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX)
* H.R. 3140 - The Mass Transit Intelligence Prioritization Act - Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA)
* H.R. 3670 - To require TSA to comply with the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act - Rep. Timothy Walz (D-MN)
* H.R. 1299 - The Secure Border Act of 2011 - Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI)
* H.R. 2764 - The WMD Intelligence and Information Sharing Act of 2011 - Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA)
Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement supporting the five pieces of legislation:
"Passage of these measures represents a strong step forward towards securing our nation. The legislation we passed on a bipartisan basis show that we must promote good intelligence gathering and information sharing -- especially with regard to threats to mass transit systems and any threats that could involve weapons of mass destruction. These bills also underscore that Congress is serious about border security and continues to support stopping criminal organizations which threaten our borders. In particular, I want to commend my colleague, Congressman Cuellar, for his work on 'The Jaime Zapata Border Security Task Force Act' -- a fitting tribute to the memory of a fallen hero."