U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo had strong words Saturday for President Donald Trump in response to reports Trump wants to drastically reduce maritime security spending.
“Whomever is advising President Trump that the (Coast Guard) Service could do more with even less is detached from the facts and reality on the ground,” the 2nd District Republican wrote in a statement.
LoBiondo is a senior member of the House Coast Guard and Maritime Security Subcommittee.
A Business Insider story states Trump’s budget proposal could include as much as $1.3 billion in Coast Guard cuts.
The potential effect on Air Station Atlantic City and the Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May are not known yet, LoBiondo’s news release said.
“Let me be absolutely, 110 percent clear — if President Trump seeks to reduce operations and Coast Guard personnel at Air Station AC or TRACEN Cape May, I will do everything in my power, rallying my colleagues in the New Jersey delegation and across Congress, to sink his misguided and dangerous plan,” LoBiondo said.
Trump is expected to give his budget proposal to Congress later this month.
LoBiondo has been critical of the Republican Trump administration in the past.
On Thursday, he called for U.S. Attorney Jeff Sessions to recuse himself from investigations into Russian meddling in the U.S. election.
“We cannot defend our homeland and continue critical security missions without the U.S. Coast Guard. It is as simple as that,” LoBiondo wrote.
“The men and women of the Coast Guard are doing an outstanding job, stretching the limited resources they receive now to keep our waters and ports safe,” LoBiondo wrote in his statement. “From traditional search and rescue to maritime security and drug interdiction, there is no other dedicated or capable force as the U.S. Coast Guard.”