What: All Issues : Human Rights & Civil Liberties : Human Rights Abuses : H.R. 1817. Homeland Security/Vote on Amendment to Require Secretary of Homeland Security to Submit Report to Congress Regarding Border Violence. (2005 house Roll Call 186)
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H.R. 1817. Homeland Security/Vote on Amendment to Require Secretary of Homeland Security to Submit Report to Congress Regarding Border Violence.
house Roll Call 186     May 18, 2005
Progressive Position:
Yea
Progressive Result:
Loss

In this vote, the House rejected an amendment offered by Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX) to require the Secretary of Homeland Security to submit to Congress within six months a report regarding violence on U.S. borders. Jackson-Lee offered the amendment to H.R. 1817, which was a bill to authorize the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the first bill brought by Congress to exercise its oversight authority since the Department's inception. Taking the Progressive position, Jackson-Lee expressed particular concern over potential border violence that might occur when private citizen volunteers are involved in securing America's borders. Specifically, she mentioned a group called The Minuteman Project that had been patrolling the Texas-Mexico border. Republicans disagreed, stating that volunteers have begun to enforce America's borders due to their frustration over the federal government's failure to do so. They added that groups such as The Minutemen were performing a valuable service, and noted that no violence had occurred thus far where the Minutemen were involved. Additionally, they noted that a study was unnecessary because the facts that it would uncover were already available. Progressives lost in this vote when the House defeated this amendment by a vote of 182 to 245, with 20 Democrats joining Republicans to vote. Thus, no study was commissioned in the bill with regard to U.S. border violence.

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