Friday, January 30, 2009
WASHINGTON: Illegal immigrants who lack Social Security numbers could not get tax credits under the $800 billion-plus economic stimulus package making its way through Congress.
Two senior GOP congressional officials expressed concern Thursday that the bill could steer government checks to undocumented workers, but in fact the measure indicates that Social Security numbers are needed to claim tax credits of $500 per worker and $1,000 per couple. It also expressly disqualifies nonresident aliens.
The Republicans spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly. But Democrats were quick to reject the notion.
"This legislation is directed toward people who are legal in our country. It is about time the Republicans got a different piece of reading material and get off this illegal immigrant stuff," said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. "This bill has nothing to do with anything illegal as far as immigration. It creates jobs for people who are lawfully in this country."
A revolt among GOP conservatives to provisions of last year's economic stimulus bill, which sent rebate checks to most wage earners, forced Democratic congressional leaders to add stricter eligibility requirements. That legislation, enacted in February 2008, required that people have valid Social Security numbers in order to get checks....(Click for remainder).