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Tipsheet

Democrats' Omnibus Bill Throws Billions at Border Security...But It's Not What You Think

AP Photo/Christian Chavez

The Democrats' omnibus bill, in addition to being a typical example of their tax-and-spend priorities, again demonstrates Democrats' hypocrisy when it comes to border security. Specifically, it has little for the U.S.-Mexico border but billions of dollars for border security activities in other countries.

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The 4,155-page budget bill directing taxpayer funds to different agencies and programs includes just one specific mention of "border security" for the United States: "$230,277,000 for the acquisition and deployment of border security technologies." The budget bill also provides for funding allocations to "protect residents in the United States-Mexico border region from water pollution," as if runoff from Mexico into the United States was the only threat along the border.

Even worse, none of the $1,563,143,000 listed for "border management requirements" of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection can be used to "hire permanent Federal employees" or "to acquire, maintain, or extend border security technology and capabilities, except for technology and capabilities to improve Border Patrol processing."

Other countries, however, will receive mountains of U.S. taxpayer dollars specifically for securing their borders. The Democrats' omnibus bill, perhaps unsurprisingly, is much more generous with funding projects to make the borders of other countries more secure than our own. Jordan, for example, will receive "up to $500,000,000" and "not less than $150,000,000" shall be "used to provide assistance to the Government of Jordan to support the armed forces of Jordan and to enhance security along its borders." 

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Another heading in the omnibus — the "Foreign Military Financing Program" — sets aside $6,053,049,000 to be used, among other activities, for border security in foreign countries. And the omnibus text is explicit. 

From the FMFP, funds will be made available for "border security activities" in Nepal. The money can also be used in Lebanon to "strengthen border security and combat terrorism" and "equipping the [Lebanese Armed Forces] to secure the borders of Lebanon."

In addition, under "Operation and Maintenance, Defense Wide," the omnibus will throw another $410,000,000 at the Defense Security Cooperation Agency to "reimburse Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Tunisia, and Oman...for enhanced border security."

Elsewhere in the omnibus, appropriated funds are made available for "United Nations-facilitated political process and border security" in Libya while taxpayer dollars under the "International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement" heading "shall be made available for border security programs in Pakistan."

The omnibus makes clear that Democrats on Capitol Hill are content to mimic President Biden's ignorance of the crisis that continues to escalate at the United States' southern border and act as though the U.S.-Mexico crossing is secure and not "open," despite the mountain of data and anecdotes to the contrary. Instead, they're sending tax revenue from hardworking Americans to secure the borders of other countries. 

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If the Democrats working on the bill think it's so critical to secure the borders of other countries that using U.S. taxpayer funds is required, then certainly they know that similar security is needed along America's borders — but they're stuck with Biden and his border crisis denials.

The bill with nonsensical spending on foreign borders, billions for IRS enforcement, and more Democrat pet projects must be passed before Friday's deadline to avert a government shutdown, leaving lawmakers with little time to read let alone digest its $1.7 trillion in spending.

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