Should Congress authorize $58.4 billion to the Department of Justice, a 29% reduction from previous years?

Awaiting Vote
Bill Summary

H.R. 5893 is an appropriations bill that provides funding for the Department of Justice, NASA, the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and various other federal scientific and law enforcement programs for 2024. The total allocation is $58.4 billion, a decrease of $23.5 billion from previous years. This decrease is a result of significant cuts to the budget of the FBI, ATF, and the Attorney General’s office, while holding funding for science and technology agencies relatively constant. In addition, the bill mandates additional regulations aimed at increasing border security, most notably the reinstatement of laws prioritizing and encouraging higher case completion rates for immigration judges. Sponsor: Rep. Hal Rogers (Republican, Kentucky, District 5)
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Opponents say

•      "[H.R. 5293] cuts Federal law enforcement and would greatly reduce the number of FBI special agents and analysts—outstanding public servants who help to keep all of us safe by preventing and investigating everything from human and narcotics trafficking, to public corruption, kidnappings… and a lot more… In addition, the bill cuts funding for the Justice Department’s National Security Division, and it sharply reduces the number of ATF agents working to fight the scourge of gun violence and firearms trafficking… The bill would also significantly reduce the number of U.S. marshals and federal prosecutors, which would greatly impair the country’s ability to prosecute dangerous criminals… On top of all that, the bill would further empower high-income tax cheaters by removing $22 billion in funding from IRS enforcement and operations support. I would also point out that the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates that this cut will result in at least $44 billion in lost tax revenue legally owed to this country… Simply put, this bill makes lawbreaking much easier, in so many different ways, and it makes Americans less safe." Source: Rep. Matt Cartwright (Democrat, Pennsylvania, District 8), ranking member of the House Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Subcommittee

•      "The majority’s 2024 Commerce, Justice, Science bill abandons our most vulnerable populations while conducting a shell game to hide atrocious cuts to programs that protect families and build communities. With an allocation $23.8 billion below 2023, the majority has opted to defund law enforcement, science, and rural development… It is shameful that the majority’s baseless attacks on federal law enforcement have made the leap from irresponsible rhetoric into appropriations language. Combined cuts to the FBI, ATF, and U.S. Attorneys accounts of nearly $1 billion will result in fewer agents, fewer analysts, and ultimately, fewer prosecutions of criminals. All because, apparently, the majority does not like an independent Department of Justice investigating the alleged criminal activity of certain individuals. This is naked politicization of our criminal justice system, and we cannot allow political influence over law enforcement activity to become the norm." Source: Rep. Rosa DeLauro (Democrat, Connecticut, District 3), Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee

Proponents say

•      "I am pleased to say this bill strikes a careful balance. Specifically, this bill prioritizes spending on programs and initiatives that… strengthen our nation’s ability to remain competitive around the world;

invest in cutting-edge research and technology, such as those authorized in the CHIPS Act; support American innovators and manufacturers; and protect children and our communities from drugs and crime. The bill holds the Department of Justice accountable and improves our immigration court system." Source: Rep. Kay Granger (Republican, Texas, District 12), Chair of the House Appropriations Committee


•      "House Republicans are fighting back against Joe Biden’s spending spree by passing the largest spending reforms in modern history through all 12 spending bills… We now have six weeks to finish the work of reining in the budget, securing our border, and holding the Biden administration accountable. Rather than letting the Democrat Senate and White House dictate terms, House Republicans got the better of Chuck Schumer.… I want to secure the border and protect American lives; I don’t want an unreliable government. Refusing to acknowledge the crisis on our border is dangerous for all Americans… I have been to our southern border, and I have heard from my constituents, and I share their concerns about the massive human and drug trafficking operation occurring on our southern border as well as out-of-control Federal deficit spending. I believe we can both keep the government running and address the priorities of Ohioans and the American people, by securing our border and continuing important House investigations to hold our government accountable." Source: Rep. Brad Wenstrup (Republican, Ohio, District 2)