Rep. Roy’s statement on voting against the ALLIES Act
WASHINGTON— Today, Rep. Chip Roy (TX-21) spoke on the House floor prior to voting against the ALLIES Act — an effort initially designed to streamline the Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program as the U.S. withdraws our troops from Afghanistan.
While Congressman Roy supported the underlying effort — i.e., keeping America’s promises to those who were given an opportunity under the SIV program in exchange for assisting American troops — a last-minute amendment was added by Democrat leadership without a committee hearing or any legitimate debate. That amendment raises serious questions and concerns by broadening the categories for SIV eligibility to include individuals that never directly assisted the U.S. government and weakening the standards of the program.
The Congressman also added that there were no committee markups on this legislation, or any hearings in order for Members to have the opportunity to ask expert witnesses how this bill will impact the Afghanis in the program or those who are working to expedite their visas.
Below are some key quotes from Congressman Roy’s floor remarks; full footage can be viewed here:
- We should be standing with Afghanis who stood with our men and women in uniform. There is zero question that we should do that, and every veteran that I represent in the district in Texas 21 shares that.
- I likely would have voted for the underlying bill, however a Manager’s Amendment added language to the bill that I ultimately could not support.
- That amendment "expands the program to include nonprofits and grantees, private organizations that contributed to the United States mission in Afghanistan.” We don't know who would be included.
- We have got to restore regular order in this body. ... We didn't have a hearing on this specific manager's amendment that was added. It was just added, put on the floor and put under the title of something that everyone supports.