BORDER SECURITY; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 7
(House of Representatives - January 14, 2019)

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                            BORDER SECURITY

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2019, the gentlewoman from Missouri (Mrs. Hartzler) is 
recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, it is a sobering time to be here 
because we are in the 24th day of a government shutdown, something that 
none of us wanted, and something that could be fixed very, very 
quickly. I am hopeful that it will.
  We have heard some speeches tonight from individuals calling on the 
President to open up the government. But the reality is that the House, 
in December, voted to fully fund the government, and all of the 
Democrats voted no, and the Senate voted no.

[[Page H538]]

  So here we are. We voted to keep the government open, and we provided 
border security at the same time. We need to do that.
  Tonight, I think it is important that we have a discussion with the 
American people about why we think it is important to secure our 
border. Can we do both? Can we find $5 billion in an almost $4 trillion 
budget to secure our border? Can we open our government and make sure 
our government employees have the funds that they need to pay their 
bills? Absolutely, we can do that.
  I am ready to work with those on the other side of the aisle. I find 
it so interesting how they have changed their position. I just want to 
review with everyone listening tonight about the position of some of 
those who are now, all of a sudden, voting no.
  During the previous administration, all 54 Democrats in the Senate 
voted to double the length of a new border fence with Mexico, double 
the number of border agents to 40,000, and spend $40 billion on border 
security. All the Democrats in the Senate, in the last administration, 
voted for $40 billion for border security just a few years ago.
  Before that, in 2006, 64 Democrats in the House joined Republicans to 
pass the Secure Fence Act to build 700 miles of fencing along the 
border. In the Senate, when we had 64 Democrats join the House to pass 
it, to build 700 miles of fencing, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and 
Chuck Schumer all voted for it.
  Then Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Hoyer voted in favor of the 
2007 DHS appropriations bill, which included $1 billion for fencing 
along the southwest border. The same Speaker who said it is immoral now 
voted for money for fencing just a few years ago. I find that 
  And Chuck Schumer voted for it, and he said: ``Illegal immigration is 
wrong, plain and simple. Until the American people are convinced that 
we will stop future flows of illegal immigration, we will make no 
progress on dealing with the millions of illegal immigrants who are 
here now and on rationalizing our system of legal immigration.''
  Then he said: ``Any immigration solution must recognize that we must 
do as much as we can to gain control of our borders as soon as 
  This is the same Chuck Schumer who now thinks that we shouldn't have 
it, but just a few years ago he did support it.
  So why are we fighting to secure our border? It is because we care 
about people.
  There is a drug crisis in this country, and the drugs are coming 
across our southern border into our States. I know they are in 
Missouri. We have to stop it.
  I had the chance, in October, to go to a port of entry down in 
Arizona, the Nogales-Mariposa port of entry just south of Tucson. What 
I saw there was eye-opening.
  What I saw is that we are at war there. It is a war between the drug 
cartels and our dedicated Border Patrol and Customs officials down 
there on the ground. Just last year, they confiscated 1\1/2\ million 
pounds of drugs, and they talked about how they had no idea how many 
more millions of pounds they didn't stop, but we know.

  All of us here tonight who talk to our law enforcement at home, who 
talk to our families who have lost their children due to a heroin 
overdose, who talk about how much cocaine and meth is in our 
communities, those are the drugs that they didn't catch.
  Last year, 72,000 Americans died from a drug overdose. Now think 
about that. That is more who died of a drug overdose than died during 
the entire Vietnam war. It is more people than last year died, in 
total, of car accidents and homicides. If you put all of the traffic 
fatalities and all of the homicides together, it doesn't equal the 
number of people who have died from drug overdoses. We have to stop 
  Part of the drugs coming across is fentanyl. They caught 1.2 tons of 
this deadly drug. That is enough, they tell me, to kill every person in 
the United States. It takes only 2 milligrams of fentanyl to overdose, 
so that could kill that many people.
  In 2018, Customs and Border Patrol seized enough cocaine to fill more 
than 141 1-ton pickups. I wanted to make this poster because we all 
know what a pickup looks like, and you think of a 1-ton pickup. If you 
can picture, here are 141 of these 1-ton pickup trucks full of cocaine. 
That is how much that our Border Patrol caught. We don't know how much 
more they didn't catch.
  Also, they caught enough methamphetamine to fill 124 pickups, 124 
tons, and over 3 tons of heroin. In fact, 90 percent of the heroin in 
the United States comes across the southern border.
  Now, we have an opioid crisis in this country, and I am doing 
everything I can in my district, and I know many of us are, doing what 
we can to address the opioid crisis. Heroin is a type of opioid; 
fentanyl is a type of opioid; and 90 percent of that is coming across 
our southern border.
  What that ends up being is it ends up impacting people. Here is a 
poster of some people who have been impacted by the drug crisis we have 
in our country.
  This mother and son, on the far right-hand side, she was addicted to 
meth, gave birth to her little boy, and he was drug addicted at birth 
and went through withdrawal.
  The young man in the middle, Eamon, he passed away, sadly, due to a 
heroin overdose.
  And Kristin and her daughter, Reese, she lost custody of Reese 
because of her drug addiction. She is trying desperately to get off 
drugs, but she has lost custody.
  We have a crisis in our foster care system now because of the drug 
problem. We are having trouble finding enough individuals to become 
foster parents. There are so many children who have been taken away 
from their parents because of their drug addiction, and it is not safe 
for them to be home.
  We have a drug crisis, and we have tons, literally tons, of drugs 
pouring across our southern border. That is why we have to find $5.7 
billion in order to secure our border.
  But it is more than just the drugs. It is also our safety. It is our 
  Just last year, our Customs and Border Patrol interdicted 17,000 
individuals who had a criminal record. That is how many they caught 
with a criminal record. But, sadly, there are a lot of people who make 
it across, who are here in our country because we don't have a border, 
and they end up hurting our families.
  Just last month, our hearts broke for Officer Singh and his family, a 
police officer from California who did it right, who came here legally 
from Fiji, and whose dream was to become a police officer. He went 
through the training. He learned English, his third language. He went 
to the police academy, driving 4 hours every day for months in order to 
complete his police academy.
  He was so proud to become a police officer, and he was a good one. He 
was respected; he was amazing; and he was brave. He was a legal 
immigrant we are so proud of.
  Then, sadly, right around Christmas, he was shot and killed by an 
illegal immigrant, someone who had come across the southern border.
  And you wonder why we think it is important to secure the border. It 
is because of heartbreaking stories like this. It is because of 
families who are losing their children to drugs. That is why we have to 
find the money, and we can do it.
  My colleagues and I tonight want to share why this is so important, 
and why it is important that we get this done now.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentlewoman from West Virginia (Mrs. 
Miller). She is new, but we are so thrilled that she is here. I would 
like her to come and share a little bit on this very important issue 
from West Virginia's perspective.
  Mrs. MILLER. Madam Speaker, I rise tonight with my colleagues to 
speak about the important issue of border security.
  We are in the midst of a crisis on our southern border, and it is 
time for our colleagues across the aisle to stop playing politics and 
to start focusing on our national security.
  While Washington Democrats toe the party line and oppose President 
Trump and anything he supports, our Nation is under assault from 
unchecked illegal immigration, from terrorists, from human traffickers, 
and from drug smugglers.
  Sadly, as West Virginia and the Nation are battling an opioid 

[[Page H539]]

the Democrats continue to turn a blind eye.
  In the last year alone, the amount of fentanyl and heroin confiscated 
at our southern border was enough to kill every man, woman, and child 
in the United States.
  The security of our Nation rests with a strong border. We need to 
build this wall.
  Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for the opportunity to discuss 
this important issue.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I appreciate the gentlewoman's comments 
tonight. It is a serious matter before us right now as a nation. That 
is why we are having this conversation tonight.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from California (Mr. 
LaMalfa), and I thank him for being here this evening. I think he is 
the first person, certainly tonight and the other night we had a 
discussion, from California to be here, so I appreciate him coming. I 
would like to hear about what he thinks about where we are at and what 
we need to do.
  Mr. LaMALFA. Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague, Representative 
Hartzler, for having this Special Order tonight and for allowing me to 
be part of it.
  I join her in my great concern for the crisis that is happening at 
our southern border. I agree with our President that it is a 
humanitarian and national security crisis that has been ignored for far 
too long.
  Being from California, I can name three names, just right off the top 
of my head, that are the sign of our porous borders and the tragedy we 
have seen from them.
  We all remember Kate Steinle, killed in San Francisco with her 
family; Jamiel Shaw from southern California, needlessly killed; and, 
as Mrs. Hartzler mentioned, most recently, Ronil Singh from central 
California, a police officer, as she mentioned, who did it the right 
way, serving in honor to help keep our streets safe, all mowed down by 
illegal immigrants in our country.

                              {time}  1945

  Now, some will downplay this. Some downplay the necessity of a strong 
fence at our southern border. There areas of our border that already 
have barriers that are significantly better at preventing illegal 
  In San Diego, illegal traffic has decreased by 92 percent since a 
physical barrier was constructed back in 1992. There are few situations 
that I can think of where 92 percent isn't seen as a win and as 
effective. The fact is that these barriers work.
  There are long stretches of our southern border where even more 
sturdy fences would be more effective. Many of my Democratic colleagues 
seem to know this, but they are apparently more interested in 
obstructing this President than in reaching a compromise to reopen our 
government, secure our border, and provide disaster funding to the West 
Coast and the Southern States.
  Now, this is only a few years after passionate speeches by major 
Democratic leaders and the votes to back it up. We saw, again, Mrs. 
Clinton, President Obama, Senator Schumer, as well as President Bill 
Clinton right at this dais a few years ago passionately speaking about 
the need for this.
  It is about giving Border Patrol agents the tools they need to be 
successful in protecting our Nation's sovereignty from gunrunning, 
human trafficking, and the mass flow of high-risk drugs, as so 
eloquently outlined by Mrs. Hartzler, by all of these violent gangs 
that have free access to our borders.
  The complete and total lack of negotiation by our Democratic 
colleagues is telling. They are not happy to reopen the government. 
They are just fine with our porous border the way it is. I guess, does 
this poll well?
  I believe the overwhelming majority of Americans are not happy with 
it. They want solutions for border security, for the coyotes who are 
preying on those who are seeking passage into this country--unspeakable 
things that happen to women in these crossings by these coyotes and 
others who take advantage of them. Is that compassion?
  We seek legal entry for people who seek work permits for agriculture 
and other work needs and a DACA solution that we can all come to the 
table and find common ground on. So, indeed, real negotiations need to 
happen in good faith to reopen our government and secure our border, as 
is our duty to our sovereign Nation that we swear an oath to protect.
  I thank Mrs. Hartzler for yielding me the time.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman; he makes a great 
point about the safety of the individuals who are coming here. Because 
we have this open border, it is incentivizing people to make this very 
dangerous trek.
  Doctors Without Borders has reported that 30 percent of the women who 
make this trek, who have given their money to coyotes to bring them 
here, are sexually assaulted. Now, that should be upsetting for anyone. 
That is another reason I believe we need to close the border and then 
enable and help and work with individuals to come here legally.
  I think the gentleman makes a great point, too, that there is a lot 
of negotiation that could take place right now if the Democrats would 
be willing to sit down. We do have the DACA situation. We do need more 
workers. We do need to work on our visas. We need to reform our 
immigration our laws so that individuals like Police Officer Singh and 
others who want to come and contribute can come here easier.
  We all have an immigration story, and I support legal immigration. So 
let's sit down. Let's talk about the changes that need to be made to 
our immigration system, but let's also secure our Nation.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to my colleague from Georgia (Mr. Allen) to 
share his thoughts on this matter, on why he thinks it is important 
that we secure our border.
  Mr. ALLEN. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for her efforts in 
organizing this Special Order this evening.
  As we continue to fight for the safety and security of our fellow 
Americans, I want to highlight safety and security because that is our 
number one role in this country. Madam Speaker, I rise tonight with 
many of my colleagues to address the significance of this crisis we are 
facing on our southern border.
  Just last week, President Trump addressed the Nation from the Oval 
Office for the first time about the importance of border security and 
mentioned the devastating story of Robert Page, who was violently 
murdered by an illegal immigrant in my home State of Georgia. A 76-
year-old grandfather's life was needlessly cut short at the hands of an 
individual who was in our country illegally.
  There are far too many families in our country who are coping with 
tragic losses like this as a result of insufficient border security. 
The bottom line is, whatever we are doing for border security, it is 
not working. We must do more.
  That is not to mention the illegal drugs that are coming into the 
United States. As the President mentioned in his letter to Congress, 
300 Americans are killed every week from heroin, and 90 percent of that 
heroin comes across that southern border. This is a humanitarian and 
national security crisis, and it must be addressed immediately, and it 
must be done properly.
  We are supposed to be a nation of laws. How can we stand by and let 
lawlessness continue?
  I ask my colleagues on the other side of the aisle to keep the best 
interests of the American citizens in mind as they continue to deny 
funds for commonsense solutions to this growing crisis.
  It is this body. It is the United States Congress that appropriates 
funds. Then it is sent to the President. I say this: Congress, 
appropriate the funds. Let's build a wall. Let's send the bill to the 
President and reopen this government.
  With an average of 60,000 illegals a month on our southern border, 
our law enforcement professionals must have the additional resources to 
successfully execute their jobs and keep the American people safe.

  From the day President Trump announced his candidacy, he made it 
clear that border security was a priority and his administration has 
been built on promises made are promises kept. I can tell you that the 
good folks in Georgia's 12th Congressional District want to secure our 
border with a

[[Page H540]]

wall. We want to do it the right way. We must stand behind our 
President. The security of our Nation depends on it.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, the gentleman makes some excellent 
remarks. The 300 deaths a day due to overdoses, the opioid crisis with 
90 percent of the opioids coming across the southern border, that is 
why we have got to secure the border.
  I agree; we have a humanitarian crisis. There are 60,000 illegals 
caught a month trying to cross our border. In Missouri's Fourth 
District, we don't have very many towns that even have 60,000 
individuals. That is a lot of people per month coming across.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Walberg), 
my colleague. I thank the gentleman for coming tonight, and I look 
forward to hearing what he has to share about this important topic.
  Mr. WALBERG. Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague from Missouri for 
taking this on this evening, to make a point that we are not just 
talking politics here, but we are talking lives. We are talking 
freedom. We are talking opportunity. We are talking security.
  We must secure our border, Madam Speaker. Driving to the Detroit 
airport today to fly here, I took note of the number of walls that have 
been erected along Interstate 94 just to secure the communities 
developed along the highway from noise and sight problems.
  We take a lot of effort to do those type of things, but we have some 
people who, for some reason--political, I believe--want to stop a wall 
or a barrier from being developed that the people of this country want 
to see.
  It is not because, as it has been said, that we hate people outside 
of the walls. It is that we love people inside of the walls, and we 
want to pass that love on to people who desire the American Dream and 
desire to be part of the American ideal.
  We see 31 percent of all the women migrating up from the southern 
countries who are sexually assaulted on the way up, and 17 percent of 
the males have been sexually assaulted on the way up. We have a human 
trafficking problem that reaches all across the United States. A lot of 
those problems result from a border wall that is not secured.
  We have an opioid epidemic in our country that is devastating the 
dreams of a generation or more. There are too many families in my 
district and your districts who know the pain and suffering that comes 
from this crisis.
  Just a couple of months ago, our community lost a young man, 
Christopher Risner, from Jackson, a wonderful young guy, a good athlete 
in high school and student in college, until he got caught in the 
opioid, heroin abuse trap. Fighting to extricate himself from it, 
surviving it, he fought the battle valiantly. He went through a number 
of treatment centers, came out, and began to work his life forward.
  I had the privilege of going to a number of forums, speaking to high 
school students and others, telling his story of the battle that he 
faced and what he was doing to try to succeed and change. But it was 
just 2 months ago that he lost that battle, and I stood in front of his 
open casket and thought: Are we doing everything we can to secure our 
people against this type of scourge?
  Madam Speaker, I suggest that we aren't if we are unwilling, for 
political reasons, to stop a President, to stop many Members of this 
Congress from doing what we know needs to be done.
  All of us have heartbreaking stories from our back home experiences 
of families that are losing loved ones far too soon.
  I am proud of the bipartisan work we have done to combat the opioid 
crisis. Sitting on the Energy and Commerce Committee, I saw the number 
of bills that we put forward--I believe, 70 in all--and saw the 
President sign that just last November.
  But we must redouble our efforts. And as we do that, one priority is 
we must keep these deadly drugs off our streets in the first place. In 
fiscal year 2018 alone, U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized a 
total of 1.7 million pounds of narcotics.
  To curb the flow of drugs into our communities, we must secure our 
southern border. There is no doubt we need a comprehensive solution. A 
border wall is just one component of what we need to do. We also need 
more surveillance technology, more border agents, and more resources to 
address the humanitarian crisis at the border, yes. But as the experts 
at the border tell us, a border wall, a security barrier must be part 
of that solution.
  At a time when hundreds of Americans die each week from overdoses, we 
need to give our border agents all the tools they need to stem the tide 
of these deadly drugs and to protect them as well. It is time for 
Speaker Pelosi to get serious about border security, to negotiate to a 
  Let's stop the political games and negotiate a solution that keeps 
the American people safe, keeps illicit drugs off our streets, puts an 
end to this partial shutdown, and, may I suggest as well, gives greater 
opportunity and security to those who deem it their purpose in life to 
legally experience the American Dream. We want to see that happen, 
Madam Speaker.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, that is so powerful. I thank the 
gentleman for sharing Christopher's story. I can't imagine how helpless 
that made him feel to stand at his casket, at his funeral, and to 
realize that we here in Congress have passed a lot of bills dealing 
with opioids to address this, but it is still flowing across our 
borders. We need to do more.
  So I thank the gentleman for sharing that story. We do need to work 
in a bipartisan fashion. These bills that Representative Walberg talked 
about were passed in a bipartisan fashion, over 70 bills. Democrats and 
Republicans came together last year and said: This is a crisis. Let's 
send this.
  Now we need to complete that. We need to complete and stop them from 
coming in to begin with, in addition to continuing to provide money for 
people in treatment and our law enforcement and mental health issues 
and those other things, to go after the opioid crisis. But we need to 
stop them flowing here to begin with. So I thank the gentleman for 
sharing that.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Arrington). 
He is right there at the border in the State of Texas, along the edge. 
I thank the gentleman for being here tonight and would like to hear 
what he has to say about this topic.

                              {time}  2000

  Mr. ARRINGTON. Madam Speaker, I would like to say that I am very 
concerned, to my friend and the gentlewoman from Arizona, to put it 
mildly. I am troubled that our Nation and our Nation's leaders here in 
this great body of the United States House of Representatives would not 
put politics aside and put our country and our citizens' safety first. 
It is the number one job. It is the most important job, to provide for 
a common defense and to ensure the safety of the United States 
citizens. We can never be distracted from that, and we can never allow 
partisan politics from fulfilling that first responsibility and duty.
  I thank the gentlewoman for her leadership and for bringing this 
discussion to the floor so that we can speak directly to the American 
people about our strong support for our Commander in Chief who is 
simply asking for the tools and resources to do that which he ran for 
the Presidency on, was elected to do, and is now doing everything with 
unwavering commitment to follow through on that promise to secure the 
border. Border walls and barriers are a fundamental component of 
  As a Texan, I can tell you being on the front-lines--and the 
gentlewoman knows this as well being on the front-lines as well from 
the great State of Arizona--that this is costing our States billions of 
dollars, $12 billion in the great State of Texas. We see the drugs that 
are flowing in, the gangs, the crimes, and the criminal activities.
  Here is a statistic: since 2011, 186,000 illegal immigrants were 
charged with more than 290,000 criminal offenses costing $1 billion, 
tearing apart families and devastating communities. And this President 
is asking for the resources necessary to secure our border.
  Madam Speaker, I say to Mrs. Hartzler, I find it ironic that 
Democrats have spoken in favor and have even supported physical 
barriers. I find it hypocritical that Speaker Pelosi has talked about 
walls being immoral when she has spent probably half of her life being 
protected by those very walls. I find it disingenuous that

[[Page H541]]

Democrats have said that they actually want to do something to secure 
the border; they just don't want to have anything to do with walls or 
  Madam Speaker, I have got a list--and I don't have enough time--but 
last Congress, which was my first term in Congress, we put several 
bills to do just that, to secure the border and stop illegal 
immigration, from Kate's Law to No Sanctuary for Criminals Act, and 
Securing America's Future.
  For the No Sanctuary for Criminals Act, 188 Democrats voted no; 
Kate's Law, 166 Democrats voted against it; Securing America's Future 
Act to give DACA recipients peace of mind, 190 Democrats voted against 
  Then they were crying out saying that we have to abolish ICE, abolish 
the people who risk their lives to keep us safe. Then we put a very 
simple resolution: we support you, we love you, we are behind you, we 
know what a tough job you have; and 133 Democrats voted present, and 34 
voted against that resolution. I wonder how that makes the folks in 
uniform who defend this country and protect our communities feel.
  Madam Speaker, I thank Mrs. Hartzler for her generosity in allowing 
me to speak in her time and during this Special Order. I would just 
call on my Democrat colleagues and the Democrat leaders to be leaders, 
not politicians, and put this country first and work in good faith with 
this President who has been willing to negotiate every step of the way 
to secure this border and protect our people.
  God bless America.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman so much for 
sharing those heartfelt words and those statistics. They really matter. 
I totally agree with the gentleman that our number one job is to keep 
America safe. The number one job is to keep America safe. That is why 
we want to find $5.7 billion to build the wall and reopen government.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Gohmert) to 
share his thoughts on where we are at today.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for not only her 
service but also this Special Order. This is such an important issue.
  Madam Speaker, having spent so many nights all night on the border, 
it is incredible what you see down there. But what is even worse is 
what the Border Patrol can tell you about, things that you can find on 
the internet, there are videos and there are pictures. I have 
daughters, and there are some things I would just rather not see.
  But as long as our border is porous and as long as we don't have a 
wall or a fence where we need it, people are being drawn into this 
country. Mexico alone has about 130 million people. Obviously we can't 
have an influx of 100 million people without destroying the economy, 
and then we are no longer able to provide light to so much of the 
  But if we secure our border--wall, fence, barrier--where we need it, 
it cuts off the tens of billions--maybe over 100 billion now--going to 
the drug cartels and the corruption comes to a crawl. But as long as we 
have this porous border, we are funding some of the most evil and 
horrendous human tragedy that is going on anywhere in the world.
  The police try to stand up--it is not hard to see pictures, find the 
stories--mayor--they end up with their head cut off and put on a pike.
  How callous, how mean-spirited does somebody have to be and how 
politically driven to say ``we don't care about that''? This is a 
political issue. We don't want the President to have a win, so we are 
just going to let the border stay as porous as it is.
  They talk of rape trees where women are tied to the trees and 
repeatedly raped. Objectively groups say that maybe 37 percent or more 
are molested sexually, normally multiple times. How callous do you have 
to be to say, yeah, but this is political. It is helping our party. We 
want to keep it going.
  It is time to do the right thing by the people of the United States 
and, for heaven's sake, to do the right thing by the people of Mexico.

  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman.
  To the gentleman's point, a reminder that in 2006, 64 Democrats in 
the House joined the Republicans to pass the Secure Fence Act to build 
700 miles of fencing along the border, including Barack Obama, Hillary 
Clinton, and Chuck Schumer. Then the next year there was some money in 
an appropriations bill for the wall, and both Speaker Pelosi and 
Majority Leader Hoyer voted for it. So I think the gentleman is right. 
It is time to work together to get this done.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. Green), 
who is a new member of Congress.
  I am glad to see Dr. Mark Green. I am glad that he is here. We are 
excited to have the gentleman serving with us here in the body and 
being a former service member from the Army who is part of the elite 
unit that helped capture Saddam Hussein.
  The gentleman knows a little bit about security, so I appreciate the 
gentleman's sharing his thoughts on where we are at tonight.
  Mr. GREEN of Tennessee. Madam Speaker, I would like to thank my 
distinguished colleague from Missouri for putting this Special Order 
together highlighting the need for border security and, most 
importantly, to put our American citizens first.
  We could spend our time debating what a physical barrier should 
consist of, but let's make one thing clear: whether it is in the form 
of a wall or a fence or some barrier combined with 21st century 
surveillance technology and increased Border Patrol agents, a barrier 
is an effective defense against entry by criminals, gang members, drug 
smugglers, and, yes, even terrorists.
  My colleagues across the aisle are now arguing that physical barriers 
are ineffective. Some have even said that they are immoral. Now, this 
is not the position they held in the recent past. President Trump has 
asked for $5.7 billion to help secure the border. Under President 
Obama, Democrats were willing to spend $40 billion for border security.
  What has changed?
  Is it possible the only difference is the occupant in the White 
  Some argue that border security is not necessary because too few 
known or suspected terrorists have been captured on the southern 
border. They say that only eight have been captured. I would suggest to 
my colleagues on the other side of the aisle that one terrorist gaining 
entry into this country is too many. I would like to point out that 
there were only 19 terrorists who carried out the attacks on 9/11--just 
19. The fact that we know ISIS is encouraging their followers to try to 
enter the United States across our porous southern border should itself 
warrant better scrutiny.
  This leads me to direct some questions to my colleagues and friends 
across the aisle.
  Is it worth the risk?
  Is it worth the possibility that one or two or a dozen or 19 
terrorists could cross our southern border and carry out an attack that 
kills innocent American men and women?
  I would pay $5.7 billion to stop the next 9/11.
  Terrorism is not the only threat to our national security. In 2017, 
an estimated 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses with the biggest 
increase in drug overdose deaths being attributed to fentanyl and 
heroin. It has been reported that roughly 85 percent of the fentanyl 
and 90 percent of the heroin is coming across our southern border.
  Does that death toll not warrant putting aside the issues with our 
President long enough on this national crisis to fund additional 
barriers and to fund additional and better drug detection technology 
and surveillance technology to try to stop the flow of these deadly 
drugs across our southern border?
  Would it be worth it if we saved 1,000 lives? 100? A dozen?
  What number would justify putting differences aside and joining this 
  Madam Speaker, I thank the gentlewoman for this opportunity.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman so much for his 
perspective, both as a doctor and as a military officer. His speaking 
of security means a lot. I think it is a good question.
  What number is it going to take?
  Are we really going to say: let's work together and let's do this?

[[Page H542]]

  I think we need to sit down right now. I am hopeful maybe this week 
we will do that.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to my colleague from South Carolina (Mr. 
Norman) to come share what he thinks maybe we could do this week to get 
this government opened and at the same time secure our border.
  Mr. NORMAN. Madam Speaker, I thank Congresswoman Hartzler for her 
efforts on this Special Order.
  I don't know that I can add a whole lot to what has been said. But 
let me tell you about a conversation I had with a liberal who did not 
believe in a wall. He didn't think it worked. He happened to go to the 
national championship game between Clemson and Alabama.
  I asked him: How was the game?
  Of course, he was a Clemson fan.
  I said: Did you have tickets?
  He said: Yes.
  I said: Let me ask you, did you have any trouble getting in?
  He said: No, I had tickets.
  I said: Did you go to a point of entry?
  Yeah, we had a line.
  I said: Well, could you not just walk in? Was there a wall?
  He said: No, there was a fence.
  I said: Okay, there was a fence. But was there a barrier, whether 
concrete or steel? Was there a way that you could not get in and you 
had to go in to a certain point of entry?
  He said: Yes.
  I said: Well, explain to me what is different with our country? If 
anybody can walk in that stadium, would they not take your seat? Would 
they not violate what you paid for?
  He just kind of looked at me.
  I said: Do you not see the similarities?
  He did, but he didn't want to admit it.
  Madam Speaker, I am very frustrated with the inaction of Congress. I 
am appalled that we haven't taken the security for our great Nation 
  How many Kate Steinles are going to have to be shot?
  How many Mollie Tibbetts are going to have to be raped and killed?
  How many police officers on the border are going to be shot before we 
say that we have got a crisis in this country?
  I have got a chart behind me that shows what $5 billion is to our 
total Federal budget spending. It is one-tenth of 1 percent. Madam 
Speaker, you try to look and see what percentage this is. You really 
can't see it. So as has been said, it is not about the money. I really 
don't think that those who argue against it can really say that they 
don't work, as my friend who went to the college football game knows it 
works, because he said it did.

                              {time}  2015

  Now is the time to take action, not to hold this President in 
contempt, like has been done, for political reasons, having the safety 
of this country and all Americans at risk.
  We shouldn't even have to have this debate. I urge Congress to take 
action. I urge Congress to put partisan politics behind.
  Let's do right for the country. Let's do right for America.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Madam Speaker, I love the analogy that the gentleman 
just shared about the Clemson game and going into a football game and 
how you have a ticket and there is a fence and you go through a point 
of entry and how the system works that way. It is common sense for us. 
So I thank the gentleman for sharing that.
  I would like to visit with someone else who has a lot of common 
sense. We serve on the Committee on Agriculture together. We are from 
rural America, and we just have some common sense about these things.
  The gentleman is from Washington State, and I would love to hear his 
thoughts about the importance of securing our border as well as 
reopening government.
  Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Washington (Mr. 
  Mr. NEWHOUSE. Madam Speaker, I thank my friend Mrs. Hartzler from 
Missouri for putting this evening together to help us make some 
important points about a very important issue facing our country. So I 
thank the gentlewoman for yielding me some time.
  I just wanted to relate a couple of instances. Madam Speaker, last 
June I had the opportunity to tour the same southern border area that 
President Trump toured just this past week. In fact, he was briefed by 
some of the same officials that I was, including Acting Chief Patrol 
Agent Raul Ortiz of the Rio Grande Valley sector. It was a very 
interesting conversation.
  Chief Ortiz said, so far in 2019, his sector has apprehended people 
from 41 countries around the world. On a single day, Chief Ortiz's 
sector apprehended 133 people from countries other than Mexico or 
countries in Central America.
  Madam Speaker, we absolutely have a crisis at the border. It is a 
humanitarian crisis. Even President Obama said as much back in 2014.
  President Trump now is, rightly, citing the growing numbers of 
families and unaccompanied minors crossing the border as a crisis, yet 
he is met with partisan criticism for saying so.
  The numbers will tell you the truth. Just last month, 20,000 migrant 
children were brought illegally to our country--20,000. Our border 
facilities just are not equipped to handle this influx of families and 
minor children. We are being overrun. Therefore, this results in a 
humanitarian crisis.
  Securing the border and coming to a solution on immigration reform 
should not be a partisan fight, but, rather, we should see this as an 
opportunity to find the common ground about which the gentlewoman was 
  Americans support a deal to secure our border, reform our immigration 
system, and--another point--provide certainty to DACA recipients.
  Just this weekend, I polled my constituents on this very solution. 
You know what they told me? Madam Speaker, 69.8 percent said they 
support a border security and DACA solution compromise deal. President 
Trump has made it clear that he is open to a broader immigration reform 
deal that includes DACA recipients if the border is secured.
  So I think our time to achieve both is right now. The fact that we 
have a crisis at the border must be addressed. But congressional 
Democrats must be willing to make a deal with President Trump to 
support broader solutions for our Nation.
  Speaker Pelosi's flippant comment of being willing to only give a 
single dollar for a barrier at the border, that is a slap in the face 
to the men and women, like Chief Ortiz, who are working selflessly to 
keep our Nation safe.
  Madam Speaker, let's reopen the government, secure our border, and 
reform our broken immigration system. We can do all those things.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Well said. This is so important. And we have a moment 
in time right now in the history of our country where we have had the 
government--part of it--shut down for 24 days, yet we have, like the 
gentleman said, all of these individuals coming into our country, some 
of them terrorists or gang members hurting our citizens.
  So here is an opportunity to come together and work in a bipartisan 
fashion to fix our broken immigration laws. I agree that the DACA 
situation needs to be taken care of, and we need more agricultural 
workers. We need to expand our visas. We need to expand in several 
areas. We need to streamline the process.
  Right now there are 600,000 individuals in the process of trying to 
come here legally into our country. I don't know if the gentleman has 
worked with some of the individuals. I know, in my own district, my 
office and I are helping some individuals who are trying to get their 
family members here legally.

  It has been very interesting to see the paperwork that they have to 
go through and the amount of work. The paperwork that I have seen has 
been even this high, the documentation that they have to submit. Then 
they have money that they pay along the way, and then there is such a 
large time frame. Some have waited over a year, 2 years, or more to go 
through this process legally.
  But it is worth it because they want to live the American Dream, and 
I applaud them. But we need to streamline it and help those individuals 
who are going through the process to get here and make it easier, the 
ones who want to be upright citizens and contribute.
  But the problem is that it is not fair, for those 600,000 individuals 
who are trying to come here, who are waiting in line, to just have 
somebody go

[[Page H543]]

across the border and not follow our laws, disregard our laws. It is 
just not right.
  So it is important that we build this wall, that we come together in 
a bipartisan fashion to find a solution to this, that we find $5.7 
billion, which is hardly anything.
  You saw the chart earlier from Representative Norman about what a 
small sliver of our entire budget that would be. Surely all these lives 
of individuals and our families' security and safety are worth finding 
that sliver amount of money.
  We pay over $50 billion every year in foreign aid, and we want $5.7 
billion for a wall. Madam Speaker, $50 billion we send to other 
countries, many times for them to secure their border, yet we can't 
find $5.7 billion or we can't get support for that from the other side 
of the aisle so that we can secure our own border. That just doesn't 
make sense.
  We can do better.
  I appreciate all of my colleagues who have come down tonight to have 
this conversation on this topic and to talk about how it can come about 
for us to come together to find this solution, reopen government, and 
to make sure that we have a secure border for our Nation, to stop the 
flow of drugs, and to keep our country safe.
  Madam Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.