by Jason Hopkins
Speaker Nancy Pelosi introduced her party’s coronavirus relief package, which includes billions of dollars in carve outs for illegal aliens, grants to sanctuary cities, and other protections for the undocumented community.
House Democrats released the HEROES Act on Tuesday, a bill that provides a total of $3 trillion in stimulus funds to state and local governments, along with other industries affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The legislation — which was not negotiated with the GOP or the Trump administration — includes $500 billion for state governments and $375 billion for local governments.
A dive through the 1,815-page bill also reveals that it includes billions in payments to those living in the United States unlawfully.
Under a provision in the HEROES Act, recipients can receive stimulus money if they file taxes with a Taxpayer Identification Number — in lieu of a Social Security number, allowing many illegal aliens to be eligible for direct funds.
The previous coronavirus relief package, the CARES Act, only allowed those who filed with a Social Security number to be eligible for stimulus money, leaving out undocumented aliens. This current bill, if passed, would also retroactively provide those using Taxpayer Identification Numbers to obtain funds from the CARES Act.
The House Speaker revealed to the media in late April that Democratic leaders were in discussions to include a provision for Taxpayer Identification Numbers in the next coronavirus relief package.
“FAIR estimates there are 14.3 million illegal aliens, meaning that in the last stimulus alone illegal aliens could have received over $17 billion in direct payments from the Federal government,” Preston Huennekens, a government relations associate with the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), said in a statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation on Tuesday.
“This bill provides other relief to illegal aliens outside of the recovery rebates. Take for instance the eviction protection for renters,” Huennekens added. “The way the bill is written, illegal aliens also benefit from that protection because it is so broadly written.”
The legislation includes a multitude of other treats for illegal aliens and the institutions that allow them to remain in the U.S.
The HEROES Act, for example, calls on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to release all illegal aliens currently under Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention who do not pose a “threat to public safety or national security.” The bill also provides $300 million in federal grants to law enforcement agencies, and specifically forbids the Trump administration from withholding these funds from agencies that refuse to cooperate with ICE, also known as “sanctuary cities.”
Numbers USA, a nonprofit group that advocates for less immigration into the U.S., took issue with the bill’s provisions regarding foreign workers.
“House Democrats prioritizing foreign workers, legal and illegal, over unemployed and underemployed Americans in the middle of a crisis is shameful,” said Numbers USA President Roy Beck.
Beck also derided a provision in the bill that would “expedite the permanent importation of foreign health care professionals, apparently to take the jobs of the tens of thousands of American health care professionals who have been laid off or furloughed during the pandemic.”
The Heroes Act, if it passes the House, is not expected to make it past the Republican-controlled Senate. In a statement released on Tuesday, House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy called the bill a “liberal wishlist that has no chance of becoming law.”
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Jason Hopkins is a reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation.