Lowey Statement to Rules Committee on FY 2020 Appropriations Agreement

December 16, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON — House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita M. Lowey today delivered the following remarks to the House Rules Committee in support of an appropriate rule for the House to consider two legislative packages that together comprise all 12 fiscal year 2020 funding bills – H.R. 1865, domestic priorities and international assistance appropriations minibus, and H.R. 1158, national security appropriations minibus:

Mr. Chairman, Ranking Member Cole, and Members of the Rules Committee:

I am proud to present two legislative packages that together comprise all 12 fiscal year 2020 appropriations bills.

These bills are the product of bipartisan, bicameral compromise. While there are some things that I would have done differently had I written these bills alone, I am very proud of the work we have completed.

Together, these bills raise funding for critical national priorities. I am particularly proud that we have:

  • Fully funded a fair and accurate 2020 Census
  • Provided money for states to secure their elections; and
  • Appropriated $25 million for gun violence research

These are just a few of the highlights of these bills, and our Cardinals will provide details on many more examples of investments that will strengthen our nation.

Turning to my bill, State and Foreign Operations, I am proud that we have reached bipartisan agreement on a robust bill that rejects the short-sighted, dangerous cuts proposed by the Trump Administration.

Our bill provides $54.7 billion in discretionary funding, which is $467 million above FY2019 and $11.3 billion above the request.

To confront today’s global challenges – from poverty to civil war, climate change to violent extremism – our bill provides strong investments in security, humanitarian, and development assistance; basic education; and global health programs like HIV/AIDS, nutrition, TB, and malaria.

For Embassy Security, the bill continues last year’s level of $6.1 billion, which is $659 million more than the request.

It also restores the State Department’s and USAID’s staffing to 2016 levels and increases funding for many of our critical partners, like the National Endowment for Democracy, the Global Fund, the U.S. Institute of Peace, the Inter-American Foundation, and the U.S. African Development Foundation.

Of critical importance, the bill limits the Administration’s ability to redirect or deviate from Congressionally-directed spending levels.

Mr. Chairman, the Appropriations Committee is charged with one of Congress’ most awesome responsibilities: the power of the purse.

I am proud that we have used that power to make investments that will give every American a better chance at a better life.

I request an appropriate rule for Floor consideration of these packages.
 

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116th Congress