House Passes Supplemental Funding for War Costs and National Emergencies

Apr 12, 2011
Press Release

House Passes Supplemental Funding for War Costs and National Emergencies
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The House today passed the Supplemental Appropriations Act for 2009. The legislation contains a total of $96.7 billion in funding for U.S. military efforts, international diplomatic programs, pandemic flu response, and other national emergencies. 
The Department of Defense receives $84.5 billion in funding, international and “Global War on Terror” related programs within various other agencies receive $10 billion, and other domestic programs – including those related to pandemic flu preparedness – receive $2.2 billion.
House Appropriations Ranking Republican Jerry Lewis voted for the bill due to its focus on providing necessary emergency funding for U.S. troops and military operations.
“Overall, this is a good piece of legislation that reflects a bi-partisan effort to provide necessary war funding and essential support for our men and women in uniform, and I believe passing this funding quickly and getting it to our military leaders is the priority,” Lewis said.
“The bottom line is that our troops need these funds to continue doing their jobs, and we need to make sure that we provide them with every tool necessary to continue their fight to protect our country and our ideals,” Lewis continued.
The legislation does not include $80 million requested by the Obama Administration related to closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. However, while the legislation includes direction to the Obama Administration to provide a plan for closing the facility before any future funding is approved, the required plan is weak and dangerously inadequate.
The Democrats’ Guantanamo “plan” does not require that the Administration adequately address the security risks related to transferring the detainees to the U.S. before closing the facility, does not include measures to ensure the notification and approval of States and communities before any transfers are made, and does not ensure that any transfers will not hinder legal attempts to bring these criminals to justice.
“The President owes it to the American people to provide an adequate and detailed plan prior to a single detainee being transferred to our shores,” Lewis said, “This legislation does absolutely nothing to prevent the release of detainees from Guantanamo into the United States – and into our neighborhoods and communities – after October 1.”
Also, the Republicans on the Appropriations Committee together expressed their grave concern over the lack of a sufficient plan or safeguards on transferring detainees. In the Committee report accompanying the bill, they wrote:
“Foreign terrorists trained to carry out mass-casualty attacks should not be released in the United States. They also should not be transferred for detention or trial here, nor should they be released abroad, without intensive Congressional involvement to ensure maximum security and consideration of local concerns. Congress must not simply rubber-stamp the Administration’s ongoing plan to release trained terrorists outright if that is what is necessary to close Guantanamo by the arbitrary date of January 22, 2010.”

112th Congress