WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA), a ranking member of the U.S. House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border Security, announced Thursday that he is introducing the Finish the Wall Act, which requires President Joe Biden's administration to resume construction of the border wall system.
According to a release from Higgins, the bill has more than 60 cosponsors and is one of House Republicans’ five pillars to address the Biden border crisis.
The release states that, under President Donald Trump's administration, 458 miles of border wall system were completed with hundreds of additional miles fully funded but not yet constructed. However, an executive order signed by Biden on Jan. 20, immediately halted all construction on the border wall system.
According to Higgins, the Finish the Wall Act would:
- Resume border wall system construction activities within 24 hours of enactment;
- Prevent the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary from canceling construction contracts related to the border wall system;
- Require the DHS Secretary to spend all funds appropriated or obligated to the border wall system since Fiscal Year 2017;
- Direct the DHS Secretary to submit an implementation plan to Congress, including benchmarks for the deployment of physical barriers, technology, roads, and lighting;
- Ensure U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facilities are fully compliant with the DNA Fingerprint Act of 2005.
According to the release, other pillars of House Republicans’ plan include reinstating the Remain in Mexico policy, maintaining Title 42 authority, requiring a negative COVID test before releasing migrants and sending a clear message not to come to the United States illegally.
Higgins also released a statement on the bill:
Through executive decree, President Biden halted work on the border wall system, created large security gaps, ended thousands of construction jobs, violated signed contracts, and left behind huge stockpiles of high-quality steel stacked on private land and unused. Biden’s executive action to stop wall system construction, his reversal of deterrent-focused Trump policies, and his endless public statements in 2020 about open borders and easy illegal entry and transforming America into a sanctuary nation are directly responsible for the border crisis, which has indeed become a serious threat to our Republic. The Biden administration cannot continue its policy of weakness. America demands effective border security. Completing the new wall system is critical to that mission, and House Republicans are offering real solutions.
The text of the bill is available here.
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