Granger Remarks on Five-Bill Appropriations Package

Jun 19, 2019

WASHINGTON – Today, top Appropriations Committee Republican Kay Granger (R-TX) delivered the following remarks on H.R. 3055, a five-bill appropriations package.

Mister Chairman, I rise today in opposition to H.R. 3055.

Unfortunately, this appropriations bill and the bill that just passed the House are written to an unrealistic topline funding number - $176 billion above current budget caps.

We still do not have consensus on a budget agreement for fiscal year 2020, which could lead to sequestration, resulting in devastating cuts to our military.

Moving this second appropriations package today as-is is another wasted opportunity.

The funding levels are far from what the President has requested and will support.  Total discretionary funding in this bill is nearly 10 percent above fiscal year 2019.

In addition, this package contains poison pill provisions that will likely lead to a veto and another government shutdown.

The package jeopardizes our nation’s security.  Some of the most troubling provisions include:

  • Preventing funds from being used for the border wall or barriers;
  • Limiting the President’s ability to respond to a national emergency, and
  • Allowing Guantanamo Bay detainees to be transferred to the United States.

The bill allows taxpayer dollars to be used to provide lawyers for migrants crossing the southern border and prohibits a question on citizenship to be added to the 2020 Census.

If this bill is enacted, industry will be burdened by more regulation.

The bill allows the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from livestock, as outlined in the Green New Deal.

It supports the listing of sage-grouse under the endangered species act, which would impact energy and mineral development in 11 western states.

It includes three new regulations that would unfairly burden the trucking industry.

The bill also prohibits the Administration from setting reasonable fuel efficiency standards.

The legislation attacks our Second Amendment rights by removing long-standing firearms-related protections.

This bill also includes new language that was not voted on in committee, which would provide backpay to certain federal contractors who were affected by the government shutdown.

This comes with a high price tag – C.B.O. says it could cost $1 billion dollars to implement this provision.  It is disappointing that this language is being slipped into this package. 

Perhaps even more concerning is that we are considering this bill before we address the crisis at the border.  This situation is getting worse by the day, and we must take action now. 

I am encouraged to hear the Senate marked up a bipartisan bill in Committee this morning, and I hope we can move legislation through both chambers and get it signed by the President very soon.

The bottom line is -- the priorities reflected in this bill are misguided.   The bill spends too much money and it contains partisan policy issues that will not make it into law.

This package falls short of what our constituents and the American people expect and deserve.

I know that my colleague and friend, Chairwoman Lowey, has worked very hard to get us to this point today, and that she and her Subcommittee Chairs included many priorities of Members on both sides of the aisle.

Unfortunately, on balance, these bills are partisan measures, and I cannot support them in their current form.