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The Republican Recap: Week of May 13, 2024

Here’s a recap of what Republicans achieved on the House Floor this week:

Denouncing Biden’s Hold on Shipment of Critical Weapons to Israel ✅

Since the barbaric October 7th terrorist attacks committed by Hamas against Israel that claimed the lives of over 1,200 Israelis and was the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust, Israel has been under constant threat. Last month, Iran fired over 300 missiles and drones at Israel in an unprecedented and unjustified attack, and Hamas continues to wage war on Israel’s right to exist.

On Saturday, April 20, the House passed legislation to replenish Israel’s critical defensive systems, including the Iron Dome and David’s Sling, and provide additional weapons and munitions to Israel for their continued defense from terrorist groups and hostile actors in the region – legislation that President Biden signed into law. Last week, however, President Biden threatened to withhold weapons and munitions from Israel if they entered Rafah, a major Hamas stronghold in Gaza, in order to appease radical leftists and pro-Palestine activists.

This is unacceptable. Israel is our greatest ally and friend, and military aid should be delivered without delay to support their defense and root out a terrorist organization who killed Israelis, who killed Americans, and who still hold around 130 hostages. 

H.R. 8369, the Israel Security Assistance Support Act, sponsored by Rep. Ken Calvert, condemns the Biden Administration’s dangerous hold on arms delivery to Israel, urges the swift delivery of defense articles and weapons, withholds funds from the Secretaries of Defense and State and the National Security Council until these articles are delivered, and supports Israel’s right to self defense.

“The passage of the Israel Security Assistance Support Act sends another strong message that the U.S. House of Representatives stands with our ally Israel in its mission to protect and defend its citizens. It’s both sad and frustrating that President Biden’s political decision to withhold aid to Israel is now forcing Congress to exert our Constitutional power of the purse and demand the delivery of this security assistance following an overwhelming and bipartisan vote supporting Israel just a few weeks ago. The will of Congress and the American people must be carried out in support of Israel,” said Rep. Ken Calvert.

What Members Said:
“As a special operator in the United States Army, our commitment to each other was to leave no man behind. Our Commander in Chief does not hold to that doctrine. President Biden has not only turned his back on our ally Israel, he has also abandoned the Americans still being held hostage by Hamas. ‘My fellow Americans’ – this used to mean something. U.S. citizens have been held by terrorists for over 220 days,” said Rep. Keith Self. “I'm here to send a message to those being held hostage: You are not forgotten. Congress must fight to get you out in spite of obstacles put in place by Democrats and terrorists. We must support Israel's right to eradicate Hamas. And we must bring our hostages home immediately.”

Click here or on the image above to view Rep. Self's remarks.

Rep. Robert Aderholt emphasized how while President Biden threatens to veto H.R. 8369, House Republicans will not waver in our support for Israel.  

Removing Migrants Who Assault Police From Our Streets ✅

For over three years, the Biden Administration and Secretary Mayorkas have not only failed in their duties to ensure America’s borders are secure, but also have made sure the illegal immigrants entering the U.S. can remain for as long as they wish – even if they commit crimes – by making it harder for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to arrest and detain criminal aliens. Currently, there are over 615,000 illegal immigrants on the ICE non-detained docket who have been convicted of a crime or have pending criminal charges, meaning these criminal aliens are roaming freely in our communities, able to commit any more crimes they please.

Just this January, Americans watched footage of a crowd of more than a dozen migrants viciously beating two NYPD officers close to Times Square. While six men were arrested for this heinous assault on officers who risk their lives every day to keep the city safe, all but one were released without bail shortly after being arrested, and the sixth illegal immigrant was later released on bail.

This is completely unacceptable. We should be detaining criminal illegal immigrants and ensuring their swift removal from the United States, not releasing them onto the streets to commit more crimes in American communities.

Rep. Jeff Van Drew’s legislation, H.R. 7343, the Detain and Deport Illegal Aliens Who Assault Cops Act, requires that illegal aliens who assault law enforcement officers are quickly arrested and detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) until they are removed from the United States.

“President Biden’s weak border policies have created a crisis where millions of illegal immigrants have flooded into our country. We often do not know who they are, where they plan on going, or what their intentions for being in our country are,” said Rep. Jeff Van Drew. “We have seen an alarming trend of illegal immigrants assaulting Americans, especially our law enforcement. My bill will ensure that these individuals are swiftly and permanently detained before they are deported. Let me be clear: this type of legislation should not even be necessary, but under the failed leadership of the Biden Administration, Republicans must take decisive action to protect our citizens, secure our borders, and uphold the rule of law.”

What Members Said:

Rep. Troy Nehls pointed out that 148 Democrats voted against detaining and deporting illegal aliens who assault law enforcement officers.  

Reporting on the Impact of Biden's Border Crisis on Law Enforcement ✅

Every day, men and women who serve in law enforcement risk their lives to protect and defend our communities; however, thanks to President Biden’s disastrous border policies, their jobs have gotten significantly more difficult. By failing to enforce the United States’ border laws and refusing to remove illegal aliens from our country, even if they have committed crimes, the Biden Administration has ensured that the number of illegal immigrants residing in the U.S. has increased considerably over their tenure. 

Meanwhile, the removal of criminal illegal aliens has significantly decreased, as the Biden Administration has made it harder to arrest and deport those immigrants who commit crimes in our communities. In fiscal year 2023, 41 percent fewer criminal illegal immigrants were deported than in fiscal year 2020, and around 60 percent fewer were removed than in fiscal year 2019. 

The most dangerous consequences of Biden’s open border, such as the fentanyl crisis and drug smuggling, violent gang activity, and human trafficking, fall squarely on the shoulders of our hardworking law enforcement officers. This has particularly strained local law enforcement whose communities are suffering under the President’s border failures, as they have to manage these dangerous ramifications that typically have been handled by federal agencies.

H.R. 8146, the Police Our Border Act, sponsored by Rep. Anthony D’Esposito, requires the Attorney General to report detailed information on how Biden’s border crisis impacts our law enforcement, including exposure to dangers such as fentanyl and human traffickers, injuries sustained, financial burdens, and operational strains.

“I was proud to introduce H.R. 8146, the Police Our Border Act. This critical legislation will provide Congress and the American public with information on the impact of Biden’s border crisis on federal, state, and local law enforcement. These officers are overworked and under appreciated, and finding out the exact scope of these issues will better help Congress remedy them,” said Rep. Anthony D'Esposito. 

What Members Said:

Rep. Jerry Carl emphasized that record numbers of illegal immigrants and drugs are surging through our cities, and law enforcement is suffering at the hands of President Biden.  

Expanding Concealed Carry Rights for Qualified Law Enforcement Officers ✅

The Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act, otherwise known as LEOSA, permits qualified active or retired law enforcement officers to carry concealed firearms.A qualified law enforcement officer, as defined by LEOSA, is a government agency employee who is legally authorized to “engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of, or the incarceration of any person for, any violation of law, and has statutory powers of arrest or apprehension,” in addition to meeting other standards.

LEOSA, however, contains many exceptions, such as bans on carrying a concealed weapon on certain state, local and federal property and in school zones. These restrictions place burdensome red tape on concealed carry rights that can hinder law enforcement officers from keeping our communities safe.

Whether police officers are on duty or off, they diligently serve and protect America’s communities at their own risk. By expanding LEOSA and removing troublesome regulations limiting concealed carry rights for qualified active and retired officers, we would help brave officers keep both our communities and themselves safe.

Rep. Don Bacon’s legislation, H.R. 354, the LEOSA Reform Act of 2024, broadens the ability of qualified active and retired law enforcement officers to carry concealed firearms in areas such as school zones, national parks, federal facilities open to the public, and state, local, or private property open to the public.

“LEOSA offers real solutions to address threats such as terrorism and mass shootings by ensuring that our retired and off-duty law enforcement officers can exercise their right to concealed carry – no matter where they live or visit,” said Rep. Don Bacon. “These measured changes will make existing law stronger and more workable for those who seek its benefits while maintaining the rigorous standards that currently apply.”

What Members Said:
“Many states allow state licensed concealed carry permit holders to carry concealed firearms in gun free school zones and on public transportation in the state in which they are licensed. This bill affords certain law enforcement officers the same privilege,” said Rep. Barry Moore. “The legislation improves public safety. Our officers face greater dangers, and current restrictions hinder their ability to carry firearms. At a time when violent crimes continue to plague our nation, we must support our active and retired law enforcement officers and ensure that they are able to protect themselves and others no matter where they are in the United States.”

Click here or on the image above to view Rep. Moore's remarks.

Keeping Communities Safe from Soft-on-Crime Policies ✅

Despite skyrocketing crime, including against Members of Congress, and decreasing numbers of police officers in our nation’s capital, the D.C. Council continues to enact soft-on-crime policies that put residents and visitors of Washington, D.C., at risk. In 2023, D.C. crime was up by 30 percent, homicides rose 29 percent, violent crime increased 37 percent, robberies were up by 65 percent, and motor vehicle theft rose 107 percent when compared with the previous year. Meanwhile, the D.C. Metropolitan Police numbers are the lowest they have been in the past 50 years.
Since assuming the majority, House Republicans have worked tirelessly to combat these radical policies that threaten the safety of everyone in D.C. When the D.C. Council passed legislation to eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for any crime besides first degree murder, reduce maximum penalties for violent crimes, and get rid of life sentences, we blocked their dangerous legislation with H.J. Res. 26 – a bill House Democrats overwhelmingly opposed.

Once again, House Republicans passed legislation to keep Americans safe in our nation’s capital. Our legislation addresses juvenile crime by lowering the age that defines a “youth” from under 25 to under 18, requires the D.C. Attorney General to create a website with juvenile crime statistics so policymakers can better create policy reforms, and blocks the D.C. Council from making any more changes to mandatory minimum sentences or sentencing parameters.

H.R. 7530, the DC CRIMES Act of 2024, introduced by Rep. Byron Donalds, allows Congress to exert their oversight power over the D.C. Council and promote safety in Washington by blocking the Council’s pursuit of soft-on-crime sentencing and radical progressive policies.

“Our nation's capital is experiencing a historic crime wave as a result of progressive, soft-on-crime policy,” said Rep. Byron Donalds. “This man-made public safety crisis is unacceptable. Congress has a constitutional responsibility to oversee the District of Columbia and it is imperative that we act quickly to assert our control when local government fails to do its job. The American people deserve a safe capital city and I will not stand idly-by as it descends into chaos. I am proud to receive the bipartisan support of my colleagues and look forward to the Senate's consideration of this important proposal.”

What Members Said:

Rep. James Comer highlighted how the D.C. Council's progressive soft-on-crime policies have endangered residents and visitors to our nation's capital.  

Comprehensively Combating Violent Crime Against Law Enforcement ✅

Over the last few years, Democrats’ embrace of the radical “Defund the Police” and “No Cash Bail” movements and anti-police rhetoric have made our communities less safe and fueled violence against the dedicated law enforcement officers working to protect Americans. In 2022, 64 police officers were killed in the line of duty, with the leading cause of death being ambush-style attacks that claimed the lives of 11 officers. 30 percent of these casualties were caused by unprovoked attacks or ambushes on officers.

As they are being increasingly targeted for simply doing their jobs to protect our communities, police are also facing rising violent crime and reductions in police funding and staffing – across the country, law enforcement agencies are struggling to keep departments staffed amidst the rise in anti-police sentiment and threats to police officer safety. We should be standing up for the brave men and women who risk their lives to defend our streets, not implementing soft-on-crime legislation or stirring up animosity towards police.

Currently, however, data collection surrounding violent and ambush attacks on law enforcement is lacking or too narrow. By expanding the types of data collected surrounding violence against police and gaining a better understanding of the circumstances, we could improve preventative measures and methods of addressing the physical and mental impacts on our law enforcement.

Rep. Dan Bishop’s legislation, H.R. 7581, the Improving Law Enforcement Officer Safety and Wellness Through Data Act of 2024, requires the Attorney General to assemble reports on violence against law enforcement officers and the effectiveness of programs meant to provide law enforcement with wellness resources and protective equipment so we may comprehensively enhance the safety of police officers.

“Right now, police officers are facing attacks from every side – both in a literal and political sense. This is a straightforward, commonsense bill to collect data on attacks against police. I was heartened to see so many members back the blue and support giving law enforcement officers the tools they need to combat this scourge,” said Rep. Dan Bishop. 

What Members Said:

Rep. Ashley Hinson noted how anti-police rhetoric has fueled a rise in violence against law enforcement, not only putting our officers in physical danger, but also harming their mental health.  

Addressing Violence Against Police and Supporting Our Law Enforcement ✅

The declining respect for rule of law and law enforcement officers in the United States, fueled by radical Democrat “Defund the Police” movements and anti-police rhetoric, has created a crisis of safety impacting both our officers and our neighborhoods. Progressive soft-on-crime policies and narratives painting the police as the enemy have resulted in record violence against our officers, cities struggling with massive challenges in police recruitment and retention, and failure to hold violent criminals accountable and keep them off our streets. 

In 2023, 378 police officers were shot in the line of duty – the highest ever recorded. Of these shootings, 115 were the result of violent ambushes on law enforcement. The average age of fallen law enforcement officers was 45 years old, and the average fallen officer leaves behind two children when they pass. These are just the numbers that get reported – currently, data does not show the number of law enforcement officers who are assaulted, injured, or disabled while serving our communities every single year. 

Regardless of the threat to their lives, law enforcement officers answer every call to protect and defend their communities. It’s time we answer the call to protect and defend our officers.

H. Res. 1213, sponsored by Rep. Pete Stauber, addresses violence against law enforcement officers by condemning calls for defunding police and anti-police sentiment that has increased violence against police, acknowledging the mental and physical impacts such violence has on police, and expressing condolences and appreciation to the families of fallen law enforcement officers.

“Despite the animosity and increased violence directed toward them as a result of the extreme Democrats’ Defund the Police movement, America’s law enforcement heroes continue to show up to work and defend our communities. These men and women continue to show up for us every day, and now it is our turn to show up for them. That’s why I am proud that this National Police Week, the House passed my resolution to condemn the harmful anti-police sentiment that has resulted in increased violence against law enforcement. America’s law enforcement officers deserve our respect, appreciation, and praise,” said Rep. Pete Stauber. 

What Members Said:

Rep. Rudy Yakym denounced the radical Defund the Police movement and emphasized that America's law enforcement deserve our respect, gratitude, and praise.  

Condemning Biden’s Border Crisis and its Burden on Law Enforcement ✅

Since his first day in office, President Biden has done everything in his power to undermine U.S. border security, including passing executive orders to stop construction of the border wall, revoke President Trump’s executive order to ensure meaningful enforcement of border laws, end immigration restrictions on countries associated with terrorism, and sign other executive orders incentivizing illegal immigration. 

Thanks to the President’s dangerous open border policies, more than 7.2 million illegal immigrants have entered our country under the Biden Administration – more than the population of 36 states – placing incredible strain on our nation’s law enforcement officers and threatening the safety of our communities. More than 350 people on the terrorist watchlist have been caught attempting to illegally cross our southern border under President Biden – an over 2,000 percent increase over when President Trump was in office. And, individuals from more than 160 countries, including countries on the State Sponsors of Terrorism list, have been apprehended illegally coming into  the U.S. 

America’s law enforcement officers are forced to deal with not only the strain of the massive influx of illegal immigrants pouring across the border, but the rising violent crime, impacts of drugs like fentanyl, human trafficking, and other dangers that result from it.

Rep. Clay Higgins’ legislation, H. Res. 1210, condemns President Biden’s border crisis and the dangers and burdens it has created for  America’s law enforcement officers, and urges the Biden Administration to support the law enforcement officers defending our homeland.

“Biden’s failure to enforce immigration laws and secure our border has brought generational trauma upon our nation,” said Rep. Clay Higgins. “This resolution pays tribute to our state and local law enforcement officers who have worked hard to respond to increased criminal activity resulting from the border crisis. Their devotion and service to their communities are integral to our national security. I will always stand with my Brothers and Sisters of the Thin Blue Line.”

What Members Said:

Rep. Julia Letlow emphasized how President Biden's open border policies have subjected the men and women in law enforcement to dangerous and life threatening situations that would be greatly diminished if the Biden Administration would prioritize enforcing our existing immigration laws.  

Investing in Safer and More Efficient Air Travel ✅

The United States has long held the gold standard for air travel and aviation safety; however, due to a lack of innovation, bureaucratic hurdles, a shortage of aviation professionals, and increasing global competition, other countries like China are starting to pass us by. 

The United States must maintain its global leadership in aviation by constantly advancing technology and improving the traveling experience for passengers. Investing in our aviation workforce and infrastructure improves the safety of air travel, creates good jobs, and broadens the aviation workforce pipeline. 

This week, the House passed legislation to reauthorize FAA safety and infrastructure programs. The legislation includes targeted reforms to increase efficiency by cutting red tape, supports pilots and addresses workforce shortages, invests in U.S. airport infrastructure, promotes innovation in aviation, and improves the traveling experience for passengers.

S. Amdt. to H.R. 3935, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024, reauthorizes the Federal Aviation Administration and aviation safety and infrastructure programs for the next five years

“The FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024 is one of the farthest reaching, most consequential laws that will pass through this Congress. As a professional pilot and a frequent user of the aviation system, I am particularly proud of this bill and the process we undertook at the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. We solicited input from all Members of the House and the aviation community before writing the legislation and passing it through the House – twice – with increasingly overwhelming support,” said Rep. Sam Graves. “This comprehensive legislation improves our aviation system’s safety, infrastructure, and workforce. It will enhance the FAA’s efficiency and the overall passenger experience, while encouraging domestic innovation in aviation. And I’m proud to say this legislation includes the first-ever title in an FAA reauthorization bill dedicated to general aviation, the foundation of our civil aviation system and where many of our pilots, mechanics, and other hard-working aviation professionals begin their careers. This is an example of Congress putting in the work to pass major transportation legislation that will benefit every American who uses the aviation system and every community that benefits from an airport, no matter how large or small.” 

What Members Said:

“This legislation seeks to strengthen, protect and modernize the American aviation industry, a sector often hindered by an agency that’s stuck in the previous century. Since 1966, the federal inclosed Perimeter Rule has limited access, increased costs for Americans flying into Reagan Airport. This bill contains a simple but important fix: It adds five new routes while maintaining all existing flight routes, whether they're within or outside of the perimeter,” said Rep. Burgess Owens. “This legislation is designed not for one airport or one airline, but for all of us. It gives more convenience, more opportunities to families traveling to enter Washington D.C.”

Click here or on the image above to view Rep. Owens' remarks.

Rep. Ron Estes celebrated the passage of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024, and noted that this legislation will ensure the U.S. remains the global leader in aerospace.