The House late Wednesday night adopted a proposal to increase funding for the Justice Department’s Executive Office of Immigration Review.
Adopted by voice vote after five minutes of debate, Rep. Gwen Moore’s (D-Wis.) amendment to the 2015 Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations bill would increase funding for the Executive Office of Immigration Review by $1 million. It would be offset by reducing the same amount from the budget for the Justice Department’s salaries and expenses account.
The Executive Office of Immigration Review handles immigration court proceedings and administrative hearings.
Moore said that the court system was unable to keep up with the record-high level of deportations. “Even with this increase, funding is still woefully short of the president’s request,” Moore said. “This bill doesn’t go nearly far enough to address to crisis immigrations courts face.”
Moore argued that the backlog of immigration cases as a result of aggressive enforcement of deportations ultimately wasted taxpayer money when the U.S. had to keep illegal immigrants in the country.
“These unacceptable delays waste taxpayer dollars by keeping people in detention,” Moore said.
Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.), the chairman of the House Appropriations Commerce-Justice-Science subcommittee, agreed to allow the amendment to sail through.
“I have no objection,” Wolf said.