WASHINGTON – Today U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) voted in favor of the supplemental security appropriations bill, which will provide funds for the Texas Guard who deployed to help secure the U.S. Capitol, as well as the Capitol Police and resources to address the Afghan Special Immigrant (SIV) program needs.
“This year, Capitol Police and National Guard soldiers, many of them Texans, have worked around the clock to help keep our nation’s Capitol secure,” said Sen. Cornyn. “This legislation supports their work without jeopardizing future security needs. It will also help our Afghan allies who supported American troops for nearly two decades escape retaliation by the Taliban after our troops leave Afghanistan.”
The legislation provides $100 million for Capitol Police, $300 million for increased Capitol security measures, and just over $1 billion for the Department of Defense, which includes more than $500 million for the National Guard and $500 million for Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program needs. The agreement also includes $600 million for the State Department and $25 million for the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement to address Afghan SIV needs, following an urgent request from the Biden Administration.
Sen. Cornyn’s Honoring Our Promises through Expedition (HOPE) for Afghan SIVs Act of 2021, also included in the appropriations bill, will expedite the immigration process for Afghani interpreters and translators that assisted US forces in Afghanistan by waiving the requirement to undergo a medical exam for individuals who are otherwise eligible for special immigrant status under the Afghan Allies Protection Act of 2009. The bill would ensure that Afghan SIVs receive medical examinations as soon as possible after being admitted to the United States.