Wednesday, 18 October, 2017

Trump banned transgender troops after border wall funding was threatened, report says

Image via Getty Image via Getty
Clarence Schmidt | 29 July, 2017, 01:19

Democrats had pushed for a standalone vote on the funding for the wall in an attempt to force Republicans into a tough vote, but GOP leaders blocked that request.

The beefed up defense spending would allow the Pentagon to continue military activities in Iraq، Afghanistan and other trouble spots and hire more troops while providing soldiers with a 2.4 percent pay raise. And he wants a down payment for that wall in this bill.

He also repeatedly said that Mexico would pay for the wall.

The bill increased spending on the US capability to defend itself from foreign missile attacks amid growing concerns about North Korea's increasing capacity to hit the United States with a nuclear-tipped missile after it successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile in July.

Senate Democrats are demanding equal increases to domestic and military spending in any funding agreement, a debate that will heat up closer to the October 1 deadline for Congress to fund the government.

Critics say that existing fencing is more than enough and that the portions of the border without it are too remote for crossings and that tribal law, environmental requirements, and personal property rights have blocked fencing for most of the rest.

"He (Trump) said it would cost $4 billion to $6 billion".

Not included in the bill approved Thursday are funds for the Department of Homeland Security, which is in charge of the wall project and financing for which will be considered in a separate bill.

While Sinema praised the Defense funding elements of the bill, Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Gilbert, focused on the fact that Congress had "taken the first significant step to build the wall". It now heads to the Senate - where Democrats have a significant strength - before it can be signed into law by the U.S. president. More than 700 miles of fencing and other border barricades were built about a decade ago. Weapons procurement is a top priority, including two additional littoral combat ships above Trump's request and 14 unrequested next-generation F-35 fighters.

The U.S. House of Representatives closed its summer session with a key legislative accomplishment Friday that included a gift for President Donald Trump. "Instead of giving certainty to our heroes in uniform, this bill would breach the sequester spending limit by more than $70 billion, forcing a mandatory 13 percent cut to all defense accounts", she said.

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