As we prepared for Tax Day this week, many of us are thinking about the ways that tax revenue is spent. For example, tax dollars are critical to funding our country’s investments in areas such as housing, health care, education, school lunches, and Medicaid, to name a few.
Our tax dollars should reflect our country’s priorities, and fund programs that meet critical needs for communities across the country. Unfortunately, the administration is asking Congress to use our tax dollars to implement its mass deportation policy. This policy would increase the number of enforcement agents to round up undocumented immigrants and tear apart families.
The administration has requested $3 billion dollars as the first down-payment on the president’s executive orders to implement his mass deportation agenda. This includes $1.4 billion to go towards the construction of the border wall, $1.2 billion to go towards more detention facilities, and funding to go towards hiring more border patrol and immigration enforcement agents.
Now, the United States already spends more on immigration enforcement than on all other federal law enforcement agencies combined. That includes the DEA, the FBI, the ATF, the Secret Service, and the Federal Marshals Service.
There is no rational justification for this proposal.
There is only one reason to ask for such a huge increase. The administration plans to mobilize an unprecedented mass deportation force. Despite the president’s rhetoric, this is not just about getting “the bad ones out.” The new priorities for enforcement now target virtually all undocumented persons. It sends a chilling message to communities across America.
Text ‘ACTION’ to 62571 to join the fight against President Trump’s deportation force.
We must push back against the administration’s spending request. We must let Congress know that our country should not gut programs that serve low-income individuals in order to finance mass deportations, a border wall, more border patrol and immigration enforcement agents, and more detention facilities that fuel the private prison industry.
We must tell Congress ‘NO’ to using our taxpayer dollars for Trump’s wall, deportation force, and detention camps.
Laura Vazquez is the Program Manager, Immigration Initiatives the National Council of La Raza (NCLR).