WASHINGTON, D.C. Jan. 15, 2020 – House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) today issued the following statement in response to recent reporting that confirmed the Trump Administration intends to divert an additional $7.2 billion in Department of Defense funding to pay for the border wall.

“We are only two weeks into the new year and already the President is playing politics with our nation’s defense by threatening to steal another $7.2 billion from the Department of Defense to spend on his pointless border wall. 

“Congress has already provided billions of dollars for border security, including for physical barriers, through the appropriate process. 

“Each year we hear from our leaders at the Pentagon that they don’t have enough money. They testify before Congress that any cuts to their funding would be disastrous for our national security. If that is in fact true, then how can the President steal billions more from the Department of Defense without seriously undermining our national security?

“Last year the administration robbed billions from military construction projects – originally requested by the Department of Defense – that would have supported military readiness, quality of life, and deterrence of national security threats abroad. If the White House replicates that tactic again, as has been reported, our service members and their families are the ones who will suffer. That is why I am so concerned about the administration’s plan to divert more funding from the Pentagon to the wall – it is bad policy, bad governing, and bad for our military.”