Rapid Response: Cummings Calls for Supplemental Funding for Embassy Security at Libya Hearing
At today’s Oversight Committee hearing on the attacks in Libya, Ranking Member Cummings asked Chairman Issa to join him in calling on House leaders to immediately consider a supplemental funding bill to restore embassy security funding that was cut by the House over the past two fiscal years.
“The fact is that, since 2011, the House has cut embassy security by hundreds of millions of dollars below the amounts requested by the President,” Cummings said at the hearing. “Restoring our commitment to embassy security would make a real difference to thousands of Americans who serve our country overseas, often in extremely dangerous circumstances.”
Cummings said if the Committee’s goal is to scrutinize security at posts across the Middle East – as Chairman Issa claims – we must examine the consequences of budget cuts.
House Republicans voted to reduce embassy spending by nearly half a billion dollars since gaining the majority. Even though the Senate was able to restore some of these funds, they were still far below the amounts requested by the Administration and those enacted by Democrats in 2010.
Even Chairman Chaffetz admitted on CNN today that he “absolutely” cut funding for embassy security.
As Cummings said: “Mr. Chairman, I ask you to join me in calling on our leaders in the House to immediately consider a supplemental funding bill to restore funding for embassy security that was cut by the House over the past two years. According to the Joint Committee on Taxation, we could save $2.5 billion per year just by eliminating the tax break for oil companies. Even Republicans now agree that we should do this, including Governor Romney. We could fully replenish these embassy security accounts with just a fraction of that amount.”