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Congressman Joaquin Castro

Representing the 20th District of Texas

Castro Statement on Military Construction Project Announcement from Defense and Impact on San Antonio

Sep 4, 2019
Press Release

SAN ANTONIO--Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Vice Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and a member of the House Intelligence and Education and Labor Committees, today released the following statement in response to the announcement that the Administration will be moving forward with its allocation of military construction projects to fund the President’s border wall. $18.5 million will be pulled from San Antonio directly, deferring a project that impacts our readiness in Military City USA and beyond:

“The Secretary of Defense’s announcement comes at a grave cost. Stealing funds from real national security priorities – in San Antonio and across the country – with the singular goal of fulfilling a xenophobic campaign promise is wrong. The continued construction of the border wall does nothing to strengthen our national security. In fact, diverting $18.5 million in funds that is used to safeguard our service men and women in San Antonio puts our entire country at risk.

“SCOTUS’ decision in late July has allowed this President to set a dangerous precedent that is altering – in real-time – the constitutional balance of power between the legislative and executive branches when it comes to appropriations power. In February, I introduced the resolution to reject the President’s bogus emergency declaration at our border. That legislation overwhelmingly passed the House and Senate but was vetoed by the President. I will keep fighting against this unrestrained money grab in the Congress and protect the real national security interests of Military City USA against this racist political bullying.  

“The readiness of our military and the strength of our national security does not rest on an ineffective, medieval border wall. It rests on real, competent leadership, lacking from this President and his entire Administration.”

Background: A total of 127 military projects will be affected by this announcement to fund 11 border wall locations. $18.5 million has been taken from San Antonio specifically that was allocated for a Camp Bullis Dining Facility. Half the money will come from funds previously dedicated to upgrading military bases abroad, and the other half in the United States. The military construction budget will fund 175 miles of border wall. The funding will support a combination of new barricades to existing border structures. The first projects are likely to begin on land exclusively owned by the military.

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