Activist Courts: U.S. Must Admit Welfare-Dependent Immigrants

Press Releases

January 2, 2020

IRLI defends rule against aliens’ abuse of public benefits

WASHINGTON – Across the country, activist lawyers and politicians are helping aliens help themselves – to taxpayer-funded welfare benefits. In carefully-selected federal district courts, these activists sued the Trump administration over its implementation of the public charge rule, a centuries-old law that excludes immigrants who are likely to burden the public rather than enrich our country.

In late December, the Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI) filed friend-of-the-court briefs in the Second, Fourth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits supporting the government’s appeals in these lawsuits and defending the commonsense public charge rule.

Earlier in these cases, in California, New York, Chicago, and Maryland, anti-borders activists and states’ Attorneys General asked courts to stop enforcement of the public charge rule. Radical district court judges obliged. One judge even said it was “offensive” to ask whether an alien speaks English when deciding whether he is likely to become a public charge. The same judge also said aliens can use welfare benefits simply because they are “entitled” to them, even if they do not actually need the help.

IRLI points out in its briefs that Congress wrote the public charge rule specifically to exclude aliens who financially burden the public by accessing welfare programs. In addition, IRLI cites hundreds of years of legal precedent ensuring that immigrants provide for themselves instead of burdening taxpayers.

“Thanks to the public charge rule, generations of immigrants have strengthened our country instead of weakening it,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “But some lawyers and even judges passionately want to privilege welfare-abusing aliens above American taxpayers. That has to end. In this era of sky-high deficits, it is only common sense that we should not be admitting immigrants who will end up on welfare.”

The cases are Make the Road New York v. Cuccinelli, No. 19-3595 (Second Circuit), Casa de Maryland v. Trump, No. 19-2222 (Fourth Circuit), Cook County, Illinois v. Wolf, No. 19-3169 (Seventh Circuit), and State of Washington v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security, No. 19-35914 (Ninth Circuit).

For additional information, contact:

Brian Lonergan • 202-232-5590 • [email protected]

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