Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adam Smith released the following statement after his vote in support of the conference report providing funding for seven appropriations bills through the end of the fiscal year:
“This conference report is far from perfect, but it must be passed for the sake of all that it supports: many dozens of government agencies and initiatives, hundreds of thousands of federal employees, and the American public that is served by those workers and agencies. There is an endless array of federal workers who perform incredibly important duties for all of us every day; if this bill doesn’t pass, they don’t get paid and those services aren’t provided.
“I am gravely concerned with the increase in immigrant detention funding in the legislation. With the Northwest Detention Center in the 9th Congressional District, we have seen the perils of our current detention system. We should be significantly decreasing the utilization of detention for immigrants and implement sorely lacking oversight and accountability for detention facilities. I will continue to work through the appropriations process and encourage legislation to better align our immigration and border security policies with our actual needs and the values of our country.
“We cannot let an imperfect bill stop us from providing for all of the critically important programs included in this package and supporting the women and men who work throughout government to deliver them. Over the previous 35-day shutdown, our office heard the stories of countless constituents about the impact of the shutdown on them and their families. Passing this legislation today will end the uncertainty and prevent another perilous shutdown.
“Today the President has now threatened to declare a national emergency following passage of this bill. There is no need for a wall, and no national emergency at the border. I am opposed to the President’s continued actions to put his political agenda and empty campaign promises ahead of the needs of the American people.”