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The Leader’s Floor Lookout: Week of November 27, 2023

Here’s what to watch for on the House Floor this week:

Freezing Funds That Enable Iranian Backed Terrorism

In August 2023, Biden struck a deal with the Iranian government to unfreeze $6 billion and release Iranian prisoners in exchange for the release of five Americans. While it is imperative we work to free Americans being held by adversaries around the globe, releasing $6 billion to the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism was another deadly Biden foreign policy failure – something made clear about a month after the deal was consummated. 

Over 1,200 people were killed and more than 240 taken hostage in the barbaric Iranian-backed Hamas attacks against Israel on October 7th – the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust. 

While the Biden Administration scrambles to deny any wrongdoing by claiming the funds unfrozen weren’t used in the Hamas attacks, the fact is releasing any money to Iran frees up funds they can use to support terrorism. Even the Iranian President stated that the money “belongs to the Iranian people, the Iranian government, so the Islamic Republic of Iran will decide what to do with this money.”

The United States cannot play any part in Iran having access to billions of dollars while they continue to back heinous attacks against our allies and support terrorist groups that call for “Death to America.”

Rep. Michael McCaul’s legislation, H.R. 5961, the No Funds for Iranian Terrorism Act, re-freezes the funds released to Iran involved in the 2023 hostage deal between the United States and Iran and ensures these $6 billion remain permanently off limits to the Iranian regime.

House Republicans are making sure we permanently prevent Iran from having access to these funds, which would free up more money for them to continue their malign activities.

Preventing Housing Illegal Immigrants in National Parks

With terrorist groups across the world chanting “Death to America”, our country needs secure borders now more than ever – but Biden’s border crisis keeps getting worse. 

In the last year, 169 people on the FBI terror watchlist were encountered between ports of entry at the southern border – more than the past 6 fiscal years combined. Additionally, there were more than 23,000 known gotaways and 240,000 encounters in October, and in fiscal year 2023, CBP seized 27,023 pounds of fentanyl – enough to kill every American 18 times.

But instead of taking meaningful action to stifle the flow of illegal immigrants across our border, such as signing into law House Republicans’ Secure the Border Act, H.R. 2, the Biden Administration and Democrats’ solution is to house these immigrants in national parks and on federal lands.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced in August that the Biden Administration approved her plan to house 2,500 migrants at Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field, sparking bipartisan backlash, with Republican and Democrat local officials joining a lawsuit to block this unconstitutional misuse of federal lands.

These national parks are for Americans to experience our country’s natural wonders, learn our history, and enjoy the great outdoors – not housing unvetted migrants. American families shouldn’t suffer loss of access to national parks because of the Biden Administration’s failure to take action and secure the border. 

H.R. 5283, the Protecting our Communities from Failure to Secure the Border Act of 2023, introduced by Rep. Nicole Malliotakis, prohibits the use of federal funds to provide housing to illegal immigrants on land that falls under the jurisdiction of the Federal land management agencies.

House Republicans won’t stop fighting to ensure Americans don’t continue paying the price for Biden's failures by losing their public spaces. 

Protecting Small Businesses from Government Overreach

Once again, a Biden Administration federal agency is looking to expand their powers unconstitutionally at the expense of American families and small businesses.

On May 31, 2023, Biden’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published a rule that orders lenders to gather and report small business loan application data, including whether the firms are owned by women or racial minorities.

If this overreaching rule takes effect, smaller mom-and-pop banks would be forced to spend at least $100,000 to comply, and in turn, mid-sized lenders would likely fund fewer small businesses in order to not have to deal with these extra costs.

This rule is completely unconstitutional, and the courts have even temporarily blocked its implementation until the Supreme Court issues a ruling on the crippling regulation.

We cannot allow the Biden Administration to continue strangling American small businesses with burdensome and unconstitutional regulations.

Sen. John Kennedy’s legislation, S.J. Res. 32, repeals the final rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau titled Small Business Lending under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (Regulation B) that requires financial institutions to collect and report credit application data for small businesses to the bureau and protects small businesses from government overreach.

House Republicans will always stand up for small businesses and protect the American dream against harmful federal power-grabs.