End the Shutdown, and Fund Border Security

Today on the floor, I discussed my vote to end the government shutdown and pay federal workers ahead of what will be their second missed paycheck while also providing for border security.  The bill did not get the 60 votes needed to pass.

With Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Schumer refusing to even come to the negotiating table, they made finding common ground much harder than it needs to be. This weekend President Trump made a serious proposal that would deliver on priorities that are important to both parties, Republicans and Democrats, and bring this partial government shutdown to an end.

The bill we voted on today contains key provisions to both bolster border security and make improvements to our immigration system as a whole.

Not only did the legislation that embodied the president's proposal invest in critical components along the border, it included more than a billion dollars for improvements and personnel at our ports of entry.

This bill generously granted provisional status to current DACA and temporary protected status recipients who live each day not knowing if or when they'll be forced to leave the United States.

This shutdown may have begun as a battle over border security, but it's affecting men and women in all 50 states whose jobs have nothing to do with border security.

More than 800,000 federal workers have lost the security of knowing when their next paycheck will come. Tomorrow is the second paycheck they'll miss, meaning they have now gone more than a month without income.

Yesterday when I was in Austin and then in Dallas, I was told that people who routinely volunteer their time at the food bank in those locations now find themselves going to the food bank and seeking food so they can feed their families.

This shutdown is deeply impacting thousands of federal workers and their families all across the country, including Texas. For one Texan who works at the Internal Revenue Service, he says he's been sleeping in so he only has to worry about eating two meals a day, not three. One woman, whose husband is in the Coast Guard, drove from Galveston to Ellington Field – that’s in Houston – about 40 miles each way to pick up free diapers for their kids.

I voted for this legislation to support the men and women who have been treated as collateral damage throughout this unnecessary government shutdown. Those who are forced to apply for food stamps or unemployment, who would rather be working, who can't pay their medical bills or child care, who not only want this shutdown to end, they need for this shutdown to end.

 

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