LoBiondo Blasts Trump Administration's Reported Proposed Cuts to Port Security, CG Operations

To fund his anti-immigration efforts, President Trump could gut the Coast Guard and TSA's budgets

President Trump will gut Coast Guard, TSA, FEMA to pay for his border wall, immigrant roundups

But the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is reportedly seeking significant cuts to the budgets of the Coast Guard, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which oversees the national response to disasters. The Senators note that the Coast Guard plays an outsized role in stopping the flow of illegal drugs into the country and protecting our borders, and that the Coast Guard budget should be increased rather than gutted.

LoBiondo's went on to say, "According to the service, from 2002 to 2011 Coast Guard interdictions and subsequent intel resulted in the extradition of almost 75 percent of all Columbian drug kingpins, including a Honduran drug lord who led law enforcement to the second capture of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman". Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had said the estimated cost of the wall was between $12 billion and $15 billion.

Moss says it's too soon right now to know what impact the proposed cuts could have. The MRSTs are tasked with carrying out "counterterrorism patrols in ports and sensitive waterways", but they are set for deactivation so Trump will be a big handsome wall on the Mexican border. We're not going to put destroyers and frigates off the coast to protect those ports.

Merkley and Wyden, along with Congressman Kurt Schrader (OR-5), successfully worked in Congress to pass legislation protecting the Newport helicopter, and other Coast Guard helicopters like it, but a fresh round of deep budget cuts could have devastating impacts in communities across the OR coast and the nation.

FEMA, for its part, would also undergo an 11 percent - or $370 million - cut, including a 25 percent ($280 million) reduction in the program for countering violent extremism and preparations for a wide-scale terrorist attack, along with a 40 percent ($80 million) cut for FEMA's port transit security grant program, Politico reports. The former TSA administrator, John S. Pistols, said, "To me, it's a relatively small investment for the potential for the risk-mitigation value".

The proposed cuts in the draft plan have aleady gathered cynicism among Republican lawmakers and homelanmd-security experts, for focussing more on the border wall and sidelining other national security agencies. And no, being dark-skinned or wearing a head scarf does not qualify as "appearing to behave oddly".

The TSA, best known to airline travelers as the employer of uniformed officers inspecting bags and delivering the occasional intrusive pat-down at airports, is considered a key element on the front lines of the national security state, charged with protecting travelers from physical attacks.

He closed his inauguration speech by vowing, "together, we will make America strong again".

But what happened to Mexico paying for the wall? If the United States secures the southern border, where will the drug traffic go?

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