The state of Washington with Gov. Jay Inslee at the helm has decided to put a special fund with $40 million aside only to be accessed by illegal immigrants for COVID-19 relief.
According to reports, this fund is meant to make up for the fact that those who entered the country illegally aren’t eligible to take advantage of things like the CARES Act, something that was set up intentionally to give tax dollars back to confirmed taxpayers.
Washington’s fund, however, allows for illegal immigrants to apply for up to $1000 as individuals and up to $3,000 in relief funding for families. The money will not be administered by state officials, however, as the state’s Department of Social and Health Services has announced that they will allow a nonprofit to doll out the so-called “Immigrant Relief Fund.”
“We have to ensure that no one in our state is left behind as we fight this pandemic,” Gov. Jay Inslee said in a statement. “COVID-19 doesn’t care what your immigration status is. We must support every family affected by the virus, especially those who lack the necessary means to quarantine or isolate and prevent further spread. This is the right thing for the well-being of individuals, the health of their colleagues, and the safety of our communities.
“Immigrant workers are critical to communities throughout the state and are the backbone of our economy,” Inslee said. “While some have been hit by the economic downturn caused by the pandemic, others face safety risks as frontline workers. And even though immigrants in the United States pay billions of dollars in taxes, they do not receive the same support when a crisis occurs. This is one way to help rectify that situation.”
Inslee’s decision, however, may well undermine the very argument made by many who advocate for illegal immigrants. Traditionally, those who believe that illegal immigrants should be welcomed with open arms do so standing on the position that those they welcome aren’t criminal in any way, and they come to the states hoping to primarily work for a living and contribute to the economy.
Unfortunately for that argument, even without the other crime statistics attached to many that come to the states illegally with gang ties, the fact that they enter the country illegally at all makes them guilty of at least one crime.
The second tenant, that they work and don’t take taxpayer dollars will be demolished for those who avail themselves of the special funding for COVID-19 relief. While it’s likely the opinion of progressives that special dispensation should be made for illegal immigrants, that no doubt carries with it somewhat of a “bait and switch” feeling for even moderates who adopted a live and let live ideology regarding illegal immigrants.
What was at one time pitched as a way for more people to take advantage of one of the world’s best economies has since devolved into them taking advantage of taxpayer contributions through various social programs. Because of growing concern over whether or not illegals growing rights could help usher in socialism, having an illegal immigrant population that is making its way by living off government handouts is likely to make those who object to further migrations even more against the practice.
Time alone will tell whether illegal immigrants rights will expand or shrink, but it’s difficult to imagine that subsidizing illegal behavior will lead to anything other than more illegal behavior.