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Obama’s $4B Bill for Border Surge Gets Frosty Reception on the Right

Smith, R-Texas, said he doesn't trust the president on border security. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Smith, R-Texas, said he doesn't trust the president on border security. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Reaction to President Barack Obama’s request for almost $4 billion in emergency funds to deal with the Texas border crisis was met with skepticism Tuesday by most Republicans, but especially by hard-liners who have consistently blamed White House policies for the surge in illegal immigration.  

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., said in a statement that Obama “created this disaster.”  

“Most of the money requested in the President’s supplemental seems geared towards processing Central Americans than stopping the surge itself,” Goodlatte said.  

Another Republican who has consistently accused the president of failing to enforce border security, Lamar Smith of Texas, said in a statement he doesn’t trust the president.  

“I’d be happy to give the President $3.7 billion to secure the border if I thought he’d actually do it. But time and again President Obama has shown that he cares more about the interests of illegal immigrants than of law abiding citizens,” Smith said in a statement. “Congress shouldn’t give President Obama a single penny until we see him use the current resources to secure the border, increase interior enforcement, and reduce illegal immigration.”  

Rep. Stephen Fincher of Tennessee tweeted that the president is “incapable” of leadership on the border, former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin said it was time to impeach Obama, and the conservative Heritage Foundation, which often serves as a bellwether on which way Republican lawmakers will vote on an issue, came out against the spending request Tuesday afternoon.  

Heritage Action Chief Executive Officer Michael A. Needham called the spending request a “non-starter.”  

“The President should rescind his anti-enforcement policies and demonstrate a commitment to implementing existing law,” he said in a statement.  

Corrected, 5:54 p.m.: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated when Heritage Action issued a statement. It was Tuesday afternoon.

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