GOP moves to block provision banning use of Defense funds for border wall

GOP moves to block provision banning use of Defense funds for border wall
© Getty images

A group of Republicans in the House are attempting to block a Democrat-led provision that would prevent Defense funding from being used to construct a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. 

The provision is being included in the National Defense Authorization Act, which has been submitted to the House Rules Committee. 

Rep. Andy Biggs (Ariz.) is leading the efforts to block the amendment. He is being joined by Reps. Doug LaMalfaDouglas (Doug) LaMalfaDemocrats hit Interior secretary for reportedly refusing to wear mask in meeting with tribes GOP lawmakers plan measure to force Americans to divest from firms linked to Chinese military: report House lawmakers advocate to preserve medical funding for underserved, rural areas MORE (Calif.), John JoyceJohn JoyceJudge halts Trump campaign's mail-voting lawsuit against Pennsylvania The Hill's Coronavirus Report: GoDaddy CEO Aman Bhutani says DC policymakers need to do more to support ventures and 'solo-preneurs'; Federal unemployment benefits expire as coronavirus deal-making deadlocks Hillicon Valley: Livestreaming service Twitch suspends Trump account | Reddit updates hate speech policy, bans subreddits including The_Donald | India bans TikTok MORE (Pa.), Barry Loudermilk (Ga.), Steven PalazzoSteven McCarty PalazzoArson suspected in destruction of Mississippi church that was suing over coronavirus restrictions GOP moves to block provision banning use of Defense funds for border wall The 23 Republicans who voted against the anti-hate resolution MORE (Miss.), Guy ReschenthalerGuy ReschenthalerSafe, responsible casino gaming supports state economies at crucial time Judge halts Trump campaign's mail-voting lawsuit against Pennsylvania GOP lawmakers raise questions about WHO's coronavirus timeline MORE (Pa.), Jody HiceJody Brownlow HicePelosi must go — the House is in dire need of new leadership House Republicans investigating California secretary of state's contract with Biden-linked firm GOP lawmakers want answers from Disney on Mulan, China MORE (Ga.), Dan MeuserDaniel (Dan) MeuserMORE (Pa.), Rick CrawfordRick CrawfordLWCF modernization: Restoring the promise Republicans score procedural victory on Democrats' infrastructure bill The case for renewed US engagement in Latin America MORE (Ark.), Ron WrightRonald (Ron) WrightHispanic Caucus campaign arm endorses slate of non-Hispanic candidates Comedian Joel McHale: Reach out and help local restaurants, wear masks with your favorite message; Frontline Foods's Ryan Sarver says we are in inning 3 of the COVID-19 ballgame Cook shifts 20 House districts toward Democrats MORE (Texas), Glenn GrothmanGlenn S. GrothmanHopes and fears for religious freedom in Vietnam GOP lawmakers comply with Pelosi's mask mandate for House floor GOP-Trump fractures on masks open up MORE (Wis.), Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarPelosi must go — the House is in dire need of new leadership LWCF modernization: Restoring the promise Trump tweets his people have all left Drudge MORE (Ariz.), Mark MeadowsMark Randall MeadowsSunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for SCOTUS confirmation hearings before election White House chief of staff knocks FBI director over testimony on election fraud Anxious Democrats amp up pressure for vote on COVID-19 aid MORE (N.C.), Matt GaetzMatthew (Matt) GaetzSunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for SCOTUS confirmation hearings before election Trump faces tricky choice on Supreme Court pick Florida attorney general scrutinizing Bloomberg paying fines for felons to vote MORE (Fla.),  Duncan HunterDuncan HunterDCCC reserves new ad buys in competitive districts, adds new members to 'Red to Blue' program Wife of former Rep. Duncan Hunter sentenced to 8 months of home confinement Harris endorses Democrat in tight California House race MORE (Calif.), and Scott DesJarlais (Tenn.).

ADVERTISEMENT

While the Department of Defense hasn’t used Pentagon funds for wall construction, it has shifted $2.5 billion from different accounts into an account for counter-drug efforts intended to be used for the wall.  

Proponents of the amendment blasted Democrats for including it in the legislation, saying that it's politicizing what could have been a bipartisan bill. 

“Democrats would rather corner Republicans into opposing this measure than to work with the President to resolve the situation at the southern border. Section 1046 is anything but bipartisan, and it is meant to stymie President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says voters should choose who nominates Supreme Court justice Trump, Biden will not shake hands at first debate due to COVID-19 Pelosi: Trump Supreme Court pick 'threatens' Affordable Care Act MORE’s attempts to secure our border and protect innocent Americans,” Biggs said in a statement. 

"Some of my Democrat colleagues previously supported funding for border wall construction, yet they now oppose their existence. The president is correct to use any lawful means to build the wall – especially when Congress abdicates its responsibility.”

The amendment faces an uphill battle in the Democrat-controlled House, with the House Armed Services Committee having previously shot down similar amendments during its markup earlier this month.  

Democrats have argued using Defense dollars for the wall would be a misallocation of funds. 

“This money should not come out of the Department of Defense as, by the way, a lot of my Republican colleagues said when this first came up,” said Adam SmithDavid (Adam) Adam SmithOvernight Defense: Appeals court revives House lawsuit against military funding for border wall | Dems push for limits on transferring military gear to police | Lawmakers ask for IG probe into Pentagon's use of COVID-19 funds Democrats push to limit transfer of military-grade gear to police 40 groups call on House panel to investigate Pentagon's use of coronavirus funds MORE (D-Wash.), the chairman of the Armed Service Committee, in the panel's markup.