White House threatens veto on current House emergency aid bill
The White House threatened late Monday to veto the $4.5 billion House bill that would provide emergency funding at the border over concerns that legislation in its current form lacks the funds needed for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to function properly and includes provisions thrown in by Democratic lawmakers “that would make our country less safe.”
In a statement issued by the White House Monday night, the administration warned that the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for Humanitarian Assistance and Security at the South Border Act of 2019 would be vetoed this week if passed.
“After ignoring the Administration’s request for desperately needed funding to address the humanitarian crisis at the border for over a month, and despite the efforts of the House minority, the House majority has put forward a partisan bill that underfunds necessary accounts and seeks to take advantage of the current crisis by inserting policy provisions that would make our country less safe,” the statement reads.
Some of the provisions added by Democrats include measures that withhold funding from detention centers at the border. The push to pass the bill comes as reports of child deaths after being detained at the border continue to grow.
Customs and Border Protection Chief Operating Officer John Sanders told The Associated Press last week that children have died after being in the agency’s care. He said Border Patrol stations are holding 15,000 people — more than triple their maximum capacity of 4,000.
Congress plans to leave Washington in a few days for a weeklong July 4 recess. While lawmakers don’t want to depart without acting on the legislation for fear of being accused of not responding to humanitarian problems at the border, it seems unlikely that Congress would have time to send a House-Senate compromise to Trump by week’s end.
“Because this bill does not provide adequate funding to meet the current crisis, and because it contains partisan provisions designed to hamstring the Administration’s border enforcement efforts, the Administration opposes its passage,” the White House said.
Fox News Griff Jenkins and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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