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Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., introduced a bill to the House of Representatives that would block states from distributing funds provided under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to undocumented migrants.
The legislation put forward Thursday serves as a companion bill to the legislation Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., introduced in the Senate earlier this month.
“I am working with Sen. Cotton on this effort to make sure COVID-19 resources go to taxpaying Americans, not non-citizens who broke our immigration laws,” Buck told Fox News.
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The No Bailouts for Illegal Aliens Act is a direct response to states providing coronavirus funding to undocumented migrants who did not receive stimulus checks from the CARES Act, which Congress passed in March to provide economic relief to Americans struggling from the coronavirus shutdowns.
Tax returns were used to determine the amount each individual or household would receive in their stimulus checks.
Anyone who did not file income taxes in 2018 or 2019 did not receive a stimulus check.
“It’s absurd that states like California are sending taxpayer dollars to illegal immigrants at a time when millions of Americans are out of work and struggling,” Buck told Fox News Thursday.
California has set aside $75 million to assist roughly 150,000 undocumented migrants who were suffering hardships due to the coronavirus, the LA Times reported.
The program provides an “undocumented adult who qualifies” a one-time fund of $500 and up to $1,000 per household, according to California’s Department of Social Services.
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“With more than 40 million Americans out of work, it is unfair to send hard-earned taxpayer dollars to non-citizens who entered this country illegally,” said Buck in a statement Thursday.
Under the companion bill, states must certify that they are not purposefully distributing CARES Act stimulus funds to undocumented migrants.
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With a Democrat-controlled House of Representatives, the likelihood of the bill passing is unclear at this time.
“We need to prioritize the American people by making sure taxpayers are not subsidizing blue states' plans to give cash payments to illegal immigrants,” Buck said in a statement.