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In a speech on the Senate Floor, Senator Murray decried President Trump’s decision to raid billions in military construction funds in order to build his border wall

As a result of this reckless action by the administration, Washington state will lose nearly $89 million in funding for a critical pier and maintenance facility at Naval Base Kitsap

Today’s speech was the latest step taken by Senator Murray in her vocal opposition to President Trump’s efforts to circumvent Congress and divert federal funds to his border wall

Senator Murray: President Trump’s cash grab is, “an egregious abuse of power that undercuts Congress’ constitutional obligation to set our nation’s budget, and it compromises critical national security priorities”

***VIDEO OF SENATOR MURRAY’S SPEECH AVAILABLE HERE***

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, denounced President Trump’s decision to divert $3.6 billion for critical military construction projects in Washington state and across the country to instead fund construction of his wasteful wall on the southern U.S. border. As a result of this callous and alarming move, military construction priorities that Congress had already funded—including $88.9 million for a vital pier and maintenance facility at Naval Base Kitsap—have been deferred indefinitely, making Washington State one of the areas most impacted by this executive overreach. Additionally, federal investments in other priorities for our military, including investments to fund schools and child care facilities for military families, were also ransacked to pay for Trump’s border wall.

“The Pentagon’s announcement this week that it plans to move billions—billions—of dollars away from critical military construction projects across our country is more than a broken promise to our troops, it is an egregious abuse of power that undercuts Congress’ constitutional obligation to set our nation’s budget, and it compromises critical national security priorities,” Senator Murray said in remarks on the Senate floor.

The deeply disturbing move by the Trump Administration directly undercuts Congress’ authority to appropriate and allocate federal funds, spurred by President Trump’s absurd and manufactured national emergency declaration, and comes despite the President’s promise on the campaign trail that Mexico would pay for a border wall. In addition to flouting the Congressional budget process, President Trump’s decision undermines military readiness and compromises national security. In Washington state specifically, the pier and maintenance facility project at Naval Base Kitsap would provide vital protection for the Navy's Trident ballistic missile submarines. In other states, the lost funding will affect the construction of military schools and child care facilities as well as critical defense infrastructure, negatively impacting military families and their communities.

A vocal opponent of President Trump’s cruel anti-immigrant agenda, Senator Murray has been a staunch opponent of President Trump’s border wall and his accompanying national emergency declaration, introducing a bill in February to prevent the president from taking future action to raid federal coffers to fund his border wall.

Watch Senator Murray’s speech HERE:

Read the full text of Senator Murray’s remarks:

“Thank you, M. President.

“I come to the Senate floor this afternoon with my Democratic colleagues to voice my strong opposition to this administration’s move to take money away from our military, to fund President Trump’s wasteful border wall.

“Now—I often say we make a promise as a nation to take care of our servicemembers and their families sacrificing to defend our freedoms, but the Pentagon’s announcement this week that it plans to move billions—billions—of dollars away from critical military construction projects across our country is more than a broken promise to our troops, it is an egregious abuse of power that undercuts Congress’ constitutional obligation to set our nation’s budget, and it compromises critical national security priorities.

“So earlier today, Democrats on the Appropriations committee and I supported an amendment to the defense appropriations bill that would prevent the President from undermining Congress’ authority.

“And I was disappointed to vote against that bill because our colleagues on the other side of the aisle would not join us to pass that necessary amendment, and stand up against this outrageous plunder. 

“M. President, this executive overreach is deeply disturbing and is particularly relevant to my home state of Washington, one of the states most impacted by the Pentagon’s reckless decision this week, where we learned that efforts to update the pier and maintenance facility at Naval Base Kitsap, a project essential to ensuring the safety and readiness of our military’s nuclear submarines, are now deferred indefinitely because the nearly $89 million that Congress appropriated specifically for that priority is being moved to build Trump’s wall.

“As a reminder, M. President, this is a wall that the majority of the American people did not ask for and do not want, and President Trump originally claimed that Mexico was supposed to pay for it.

“And that Congress has time and again decided not to fund it on a bipartisan basis—to the point that President Trump decided to make a bogus national emergency declaration and sidestep Congress to raid the federal coffers for his reckless vanity project.

“And it’s not just Naval Base Kitsap.

“We also learned that President Trump and the Pentagon are more than happy to fund this wall by slashing other military priorities like strengthening access to military child care, repairing vital military assets that were damaged by recent natural disasters, and more that enable our troops and their families to serve our country as we ask them to do.

“So here’s the bottom line: I, and Senate Democrats, will not stand by while this President steps over Congress to build his wall on the backs of our troops and their families, because they deserve a lot better from this country, and I won’t let up until this is made right.

“Thank you, M. President—I yield the floor.”

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