Imagine a raging inferno at our border and the American people begging the politicians to take notice of the problem. Finally, after a year of cajoling, the politicians swiftly turn their attention to the inferno and douse the flames …with a blowtorch and lighter fluid.
Today, both parties got together and agreed to spend even more money on illegal aliens without a penny for deportations, interdiction, or enforcement, while declaring that they solved the border problem. After just minutes of marking up the first major border legislation in months, the Senate Appropriations Committee passed a $4.59 billion supplemental spending bill with no debate, 30-1.
Here are the highlights:
Apologists for the administration will suggest that this is “the best they can do.” They will also suggest that it is necessary to fund these programs to prevent more chaos. But absent any effort to use any other leverage or executive action to fund enforcement and change the policies, they as may as well hand $4.5 billion straight to the cartels and smugglers. Everything is an excuse for a Republican Party that seems incapable of even holding the line Obama did in 2014. They have blown through every budget bill and refuse to demand more funding for ICE, policy changes, or fixes to the lawfare. With every one of these bills, they give Democrats even more lighter fluid, making current law worse, and then claim it’s the “best” they can get.
The question Trump voters need to ask is: What is the endgame? It’s OK to give in to Democrats once or twice if you have a solid plan to hold the line on other points of leverage – from invoking an 1182(f) shutoff and getting rid of DACA to designating the cartels as terrorists, deploying the military more aggressively, and using must-pass bills and budget bills in September to hold the line. But that has never happened for the first 2.5 years, and there are certainly no signs of that happening now.
However, in the Orwellian language of the bipartisan swamp, prioritizing illegal aliens is yet again is somehow touted as “funding border security.”
If Trump even got something – just one thing, whether ICE agents, more border interdiction assets, or just one policy change – it might be worth giving Democrats this funding. But we got nothing. The only thing this bill will accomplish is giving Democrats, particularly those Republicans need to defeat in order to win back the House majority, cover to say they put out the flames at the border. Fortunately for them, they get to do so while fanning them more than ever, just like they did in February, when GOP apologists gave us the same song and dance they are giving today.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.