Congress Passes $2.1 Billion Security Bill
The House and Senate on Thursday passed a bill that would secure funding for the U.S. Capitol and the Capitol Police in the wake of the January 6th riot, which was at risk of having to furlough officers without additional money. The House voted 416 to 11 to approve the $2.1 billion emergency supplemental funding bill. As we learned from “Schoolhouse Rock”, the bill now goes to President Joe Biden for his signature, and he’s expected to sign it.
The House members who opposed the measure came from both sides of the political spectrum, including the Democratic “Squad” of Reps. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., as well as Jamal Bowman, D-N.Y., Cori Bush, D-Mo., who have all previously said they are against more money going to the police without any guidelines for reforming the country’s law enforcement.
In an unusual display of speed for Congress, the Senate had voted 98-0 hours earlier. The bill includes almost $1 billion for Capitol security — $100 million for the Capitol Police, $300 million for security measures, and $500 million for the National Guard, which concluded its mission at the Capitol in May. The bill also includes roughly $1.1 billion for the special immigrant visa program to assist with Afghan interpreters coming to the United States as American troops withdraw from the nation’s longest war.
The Conservative members who voted against the bill, Chip Roy, R-Texas, Thomas Massie, R-Ky., Bob Good, R-Va., Tom McClintock, R-Calif., and Ralph Norman, R-S.C., claim their votes reflect their opposition to any increased government spending. The bill would include $31.1 million to backfill overtime for the Capitol Police until the department can hire and train additional officers, and $4.4 million in trauma support, including six new mental health counselors, according to the bill summary.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate passes $2.1B bill to bolster Capitol security after Jan. 6 insurrection, adds visas for Afghans who helped US.
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) July 29, 2021
The vote comes just two days after the new Select Committee’s inaugural hearing, where two Capitol Police officers and two Metropolitan officers had given compelling and often emotional testimony about their experiences fighting off the crowd of rioters who breached the Capitol after the “Stop the Steal” rally on January 6th.
The US Senate just passed a $2.1B bill to strengthen Capitol security. It also adds visas for Afghan allies who helped us. Fantastic, now let’s get voting rights done.
— Ricky Davila (@TheRickyDavila) July 29, 2021