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June 21, 2023

Congressman David Trone Slams Retaliatory Funding Cuts to National Security During Homeland Security Full Committee Mark-up


June 21, 2023 

Contact: Sasha Galbreath, 

Congressman David Trone Slams Retaliatory Funding Cuts to National Security During Homeland Security Full Committee Mark-up

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman David Trone (D-MD), member of the House Committee on Appropriations’ Homeland Security Subcommittee and co-chair of the U.S. Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking, released a statement condemning Republicans’ devastating funding cuts to national security during the markup of the Subcommittee’s Fiscal Year 2024 funding bill:

“It remains abundantly clear that extreme House Republicans are seeking retaliation for the bipartisan debt ceiling agreement by shortchanging America’s national security.

“In 2023, an age with artificial intelligence and sophisticated satellite technology, extreme Republicans remain hell-bent on building a physical wall to stem illegal immigration and drug trafficking. It’s a terrific waste of money – billions in taxpayer dollars – by a party that prides itself on fiscal responsibility.

“As the co-chair of the Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking, I can tell you firsthand that this approach will do nothing to stop the flow of fentanyl into our communities. Over 80% of fentanyl is trafficked by American citizens, and over 93% is trafficked through legal ports of entry. And yet they are cutting resources for smart technology to detect trafficking at the border. But that’s not what Republicans want you to hear.

“I’m increasingly concerned by extreme Republicans’ attacks on migrants seeking asylum in our country. This is the greatest nation in the world – we do not look down on immigrants seeking a better life for themselves and their families – we lift them up to become part of the fabric of our democracy. Working together, we have the ability to improve our immigration system and secure our border against harmful trafficking. It’s up to us to put politics aside and uphold our nation’s foundational values.

“This bill represents messaging and soundbites for the Republican leadership – not real solutions. For these reasons and many others, I oppose this legislation.”


For 2024, the bill provides $62.8 billion for the Department of Homeland Security and an additional $20.3 billion for major disaster response and recovery. The legislation:

  • Provides a false sense of national security, by spending billions on outdated and expensive border wall, and leaving our ports of entry and interior Border Patrol checkpoints vulnerable to the trafficking of fentanyl and other illicit narcotics.
  • Cuts necessary funding to manage the border safely and securely, putting our DHS workforce and our border communities at risk.
  • Fails to protect our communities from violent extremists, underfunding programs that enhance regional preparedness and response capabilities, making our communities less secure.
  • Weakens our national security through inadequate cybersecurity and infrastructure security investments, opening the U.S. to increased cyberattacks and foreign adversary influence.
  • Leaves Americans vulnerable to the growing number and increasing severity of natural disasters by failing to deliver needed resources to mitigate the loss of life and property, combat climate change, and support climate resilience.
  • Undermines the Transportation Security Administration workforce by unfairly implementing the pay restructuring we committed to last Congress.

Congressman David Trone was elected to the House of Representatives in November 2018 to serve the 6th District of Maryland, which includes all or part of Montgomery, Frederick, Washington, Allegany, and Garrett Counties. Trone serves on the Appropriations, Budget, and Joint Economic Committees. In Congress, Trone is fighting to make progress on issues that matter to Marylanders, including the mental health and addiction crises, criminal justice reform, and funding for medical research.

The U.S. Commission on Combating Synthetic Opioid Trafficking was established under Section 7221 of the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2020, and, by law, concluded its work on February 8, 2022. The Commission includes several federal departments and agencies, as well as four outside members appointed by congressional leadership from the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Commission was led by two co-chairs, Congressman David Trone (D-MD) and Senator Tom Cotton (R-AR), who were appointed by congressional leadership and approved by the President of the United States.