California Governor Announces Coronavirus Stimulus Funds for Illegal Aliens
By Shari Rendall | FAIR Take | April 2020
California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) unveiled his plan in mid April to hand out millions in his state's taxpayer dollars as stimulus checks to illegal aliens who did not qualify for federal coronavirus payments. The “Disaster Relief Fund” allocates $125 million to 150,000 illegal aliens, giving $500 per adult and up to $1,000 per household. Taxpayers will contribute $75 million to the “Disaster Relief Fund and $50 million will come from a “network" of open-borders organizations.
Governor Newsom says that California always “steps up to support those in need regardless of [their] status.” He claims illegal aliens are addressing the “essential needs of tens of millions of Californians” and they contributed $2.5 billion in taxes. While illegal aliens sometimes pay (many work under the table), according to the 2017 FAIR Cost Study, this is a paltry amount compared to what they cost California taxpayers. According to the study, illegal aliens cost California taxpayers $23 billion annually.
Despite Governor Newsom’s announcement, the “Disaster Relief Fund” will need to be approved by the state legislature. However, Democrats hold a supermajority in both chambers and party leaders were immediately supportive. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) said they were already considering the proposal and Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) supports “any efforts to bring much needed resources to all of our communities.”
Sadly, there didn’t seem to be any room in the Governor’s heart for California’s homeless veteran population, nearly 11,000 strong, a group of heroes who are in desperate need of state help. California has set the gold standard on how to not treat your veterans, who often have to wait several months before receiving the proper medical care that they deserve, with wait times in some parts of California for basic care at the Veterans Affairs clinic lasting up to three months.
The proposed fund wasn’t received by all with a shower of praise. Senate Minority Leader Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) condemned the plan, saying “food banks are unable to feed all families who need their assistance, children do not have access to equipment for distance learning, some cities are struggling to maintain solvency, hospitals are forced to access their reserves, small businesses are closing their doors for good and 2.7 million Californians are out of work. Instead of meeting these urgent needs, Governor Newsom has chosen to irresponsibly pursue a left-wing path and unilaterally secure $125 million for illegal aliens.”
Senator John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa) added “I see the state of California and its budget as a house of cards and with this coronavirus-induced recession, I’m just trying to figure out where the money would come from … I would say helping [illegal aliens] would be a luxury item.”
The state constitution requires passing a budget by mid-June, and revenues are expected to be dramatically down, both in light of the pandemic as well as the state having pushed its tax filing deadline back to July 15. “Sizable" spending cuts to most programs are anticipated, but so far the political establishment in Sacramento seems committed to spending even more on illegal aliens despite everything else.