Washington, D.C., July 28, 2023 – U.S. Senator Katie Britt (R-Ala.) yesterday joined her colleagues in passing the FINISH IT Act, which would force the Biden Administration’s Department of Defense (DoD) to allow millions of dollars of unused border wall panels already owned by the U.S. government to be used to extend the wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
This legislation was introduced by Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and cosponsored by Senators Britt, Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), and Tom Cotton (R-Ark.).
The legislation follows an investigation by Republican members of the Senate Committee on Armed Services that revealed the DoD is spending $47 million per year, or $130,000 per day, to store the panels at various locations across the Southwest. The FINISH IT Act would require the federal government to deploy the materials or transfer them to state governments who will use them for wall construction.
“The unprecedented humanitarian and national security crisis at our southern border – a crisis that the Biden Administration still refuses to even recognize – continues to grow, overrunning the courageous law enforcement agents trying to defend our homeland,” said Senator Britt.“We need to secure our border, and finishing the wall is a critical component of this mission. This commonsense legislation would help keep American families safe and save hard-earned taxpayer money from being wasted – it’s a clear win-win for everyone besides the cartels.”
“President Biden could not have created a worse border crisis if he tried, but he continues to stand in the way of a solution,” Senator Wicker said. “As Senate Republicans revealed earlier this year, his Administration is forcing the Department of Defense to spend millions of dollars a year to let border panels go unused when they could be used to secure our border. It is time for the President to put these materials to use and finish the wall.”
The FINISH IT Act passed as part of the Fiscal Year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
The full bill text of the FINISH IT Act is available here.
Senator Britt has made border security and the safety of American children, families, and communities a top focus during her first six months in office. She introduced a robust package of four pieces of legislation and has cosponsored an additional 11 bills related to the topic, including Senator Marsha Blackburn’s (R-Tenn.) Stop Taxpayer Funding of Traffickers Act; Senator Chuck Grassley’s (R-Iowa) Immigration Parole Reform Act of 2023 and Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act; Senator Ted Budd’s (R-N.C.) Build the Wall Now Act; Senator Marco Rubio’s (R-Fla.) No Coyote Cash Act and Felony Murder for Deadly Fentanyl Distribution Act; Senator Mike Lee’s (R-Utah) Stopping Border Surges Act; Senator Tommy Tuberville’s (R-Ala.) Border Safety and Security Act; Senator John Kennedy’s (R-La.) Fairness in Fentanyl Sentencing Act of 2023; Senator Ted Cruz’s (R-Tex.) Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act; and Senator Tim Scott’s (R-S.C.) FEND Off Fentanyl Act.