Granger Remarks on H.R. 4502, Seven-Bill Appropriations Package
Thank you, Madam Speaker.
I rise today in strong opposition to H.R. 4502, a package of seven fiscal year 2022 appropriations bills that will be considered by the House this week.
I wish the circumstances were different and I could support this important piece of legislation that funds critical programs.
Unfortunately, after months of committee hearings and markups, this year’s bills have too many fatal flaws.
First, there is no agreement between Republicans and Democrats on the topline spending level for appropriations.
Second, there is no bipartisan agreement on the funding level for each individual bill. To put it simply, non-defense spending is too high and defense spending is too low.
Third, our colleagues on the other side of the aisle have included the most alarming policy changes I have ever seen.
While I acknowledge the hard work of Chair DeLauro and her subcommittee chairs, this package does not reflect the type of bipartisan agreement that we must have to complete the appropriations process this year.
Instead of crafting legislation both sides of the aisle can support, the bills included in this package were written to address the most extreme views in the Majority Party.
At a time of record-high deficits and debt, now is not the time to double down on increasing domestic spending.
Here are just a few examples of the excess spending included in this package:
- A 36% increase for the Labor-H.H.S. bill;
- A 39% increase for the White House and
- A 22% increase for the Vice-President’s office.
All of this comes at a time when we are seeing inflation rise at the fastest pace in 13 years.
For the sake of generations to come, we cannot afford to spend like this.
In addition to these unrealistic spending levels, the Majority has made questionable policy decisions that will complicate any attempts to come to a bipartisan agreement.
For example, their funding priorities will reverse the gains in energy independence that we have made over the past decade and will actually increase our dependence on China for critical minerals.
Another area that is particularly concerning is that this bill fails to include longstanding language prohibiting the transfer of detainees currently at Guantanamo Bay to the United States.
These detainees are the worst of the worst, and we need assurance that they will not be moved to our soil.
And finally, the most startling position taken in this bill is the deliberate removal of the Hyde amendment and other long-standing, bipartisan provisions to protect life.
The bill also provides funds for the largest Planned Parenthood affiliate in the country, which performs thousands of abortions each year.
This is not the way to do business if we want to enact full-year appropriations bills this year.
With the House only planning to be in session and voting for 12 more legislative days before the end of the fiscal year, we have a lot of work to do and little time to do it.
We must develop topline spending levels that both sides can support.
We have countless policy differences that will take time to resolve, and protecting the lives of unborn children must be the first step.
If we want to avoid a long-term continuing resolution—or worse, a government shutdown—we must get serious and do the work our constituents sent us here to do.
I urge my colleagues to vote against this package, and I reserve the balance of my time.