House Leaders Demand DHS Reverse Retaliatory Global Entry Ban on New York Residents

Feb 8, 2020
Press Release

Washington (February 8, 2020)–Reps. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Kathleen Rice (D-NY), Chairwoman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border Security, Facilitation, & Operations, and Yvette D. Clarke (D-NY), sent a letter to Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf strongly opposing the decision by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to discriminate against residents of the State of New York by barring them from enrolling or re-enrolling in four U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Trusted Traveler Programs.  The Members call for this senseless and retaliatory decision to be immediately reversed.

“Your justification for this sudden policy shift appears to be no more than a pretext,” the Members write.  “You have claimed that DHS is revoking New York residents’ eligibility for the programs because the Department can no longer access certain state Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) records.  Yet a driver’s license is not even required to participate in these programs.  Indeed, citizens of a dozen foreign countries—who presumably do not possess U.S. driver’s licenses—can continue to enroll.”

In the letter, the Members request documents from DHS on its decision-making process, including all communications within DHS, with the White House, or with any third party.  They also request all documents justifying this decision.

“[W]e are concerned that the Department’s policy change may be an improper attempt to use official DHS policy to punish the people of New York because their state government has a political disagreement with the Trump Administration over immigration policy,” the Members also write.  “Needless to say, using your authority as Acting Secretary of DHS to retaliate against Americans with different political views would be a gross violation of the Constitution—and your oath of office.”

Link to Letter

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116th Congress