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Senate Dems Block Amendment to Restore Veteran Benefits by Closing Illegal Immigrant Welfare Loophole

41fcce8deb2b49fbb17cbd7749b7fcb6-e1376585936571Senate Republicans were unable to stop military pension cuts when Senate Democrats blocked a vote on an amendment to prevent the cuts by closing a welfare loophole for illegal immigrants Tuesday evening.

The two-year budget deal brokered by Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, would cut military pensions by $6 billion over ten years, leaving some Senate Republicans scrambling to stop the cuts.

“Removing this unbalanced treatment of our military retirees ought to be one of the key actions we should take before this legislation moves forward. In fact, greater savings than this can be achieved by passing a legislative fix recommended by the Inspector General of the U.S. Treasury that would stop the IRS from improperly providing tax credits to illegal aliens,” Alabama Republican Jeff Sessions said Monday, announcing his co-sponsorship of Mississippi Republican Sen. Roger Wicker’s amendment to restore the military retirement benefits Monday.

Additionally, the Alabama Republican offered his own amendment to restore the cuts by targeting a child tax credit loophole that illegal immigrants have used to unlawfully obtain welfare benefits.

In 2011, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration found that “individuals who are not authorized to work in the United States” and therefore did not have a valid Social Security number were still able to obtain billions in Additional Child Tax Credits by filing returns with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.

Specifically the Internal Revenue Service watchdog found that unauthorized individuals received $4.2 billion refundable credits in Processing Year 2010.

Tuesday evening, Sessions attempted to force Majority Leader Harry Reid allow amendments the budget agreement.

Sessions hoped to attach his amendment to the deal — which would have closed the loophole by requiring a Social Security number to claim the refundable portion of the child tax credit and restore military retirement benefits.

Sessions’ motion failed on a 46 – 54 party line vote, with North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan crossing the aisle as the lone Democrat to vote with the Republicans.

“Reid’s majority just voted to keep pension cut for vets instead of cutting welfare payments to illegal aliens,” a Sessions aide emailed.

Meanwhile, Sessions slammed Reid and Democrats for blocking amendments and ideas that would prevent the cuts to military retirement benefits, including those for disabled retirees.

“Today, Reid and his majority quashed the ability of any Senator to offers amendments to the spending deal that emerged from the House. They voted to undermine their own ability as Senators to offer amendments and do legislative work in the clear light of day,” Sessions said in a statement after his motion was voted down.

“They voted to block the Senate from working to improve this tax-and-spend deal,” he added. “Finally, by blocking my amendment, they voted to cut pensions for wounded warriors. Senators in this chamber have many valid ideas for replacing these pension cuts, including my proposal to close the tax welfare loophole for illegal filers, and all deserved a fair and open hearing. But they were denied.”

Murray argued that adding more amendments would jeopardize the carefully crafted bill and noted that, given the two-year time frame Democrats and Republicans could continue to work together to find savings in the future.

The budget deal, which has already passed in the House, is expected to pass in the Senate Wednesday.

Comments (8)

  1. Rock says:

    Why isn’t this story on the front page of every newspaper and the topic of every evening TV news show? We are talking about 4.2 billion dollars in tax credits (cash refunds) payable to people who haven’t even paid into the tax system. They laugh in our face as do the entire Democratic Party! The undocumented illegals ( oh excuse my language) cost us billions of dollars to house -feed -educate- clothe – and cure but the I think the absolute worst offense is the tax credits for their children in Mexico. They claim 6 8 10 kids and we just pay them with out any investigation whatsoever. We are just being taken for a ride by the Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi machine.

    • PaulE says:

      “Why isn’t this story on the front page of every newspaper and the topic of every evening TV news show?”

      Simple. The mainstream media has been in the tank for the Democrats for decades and for Obama since he was elected to the United States Senate. Criticism of either is not permissible. There are very few news outlets that actually still report the news anymore. Most of what you see on the major networks is nothing more than the officially sanctioned propaganda, word for word.

      That this policy also benefits a major Democrat constituency, worth potentially millions of future Democrat votes, makes it all the more “hands-off” in terms of being reported. At least for now. I’m sure that once the White House spin machine fabricates a story about “How this shows Obama and the Democrats are so very compassionate about helping those less fortunate”, or something along those lines, then that the media will run that sanitized version for a few news cycles (one to three days).

      If Republicans had put this kind of policy forward, the mainstream media would be leading with it daily. Then you would hear about all the misuse of taxpayer money. The mainstream media practices the art of hypocrisy quite well.

  2. HAM says:

    PaulE: “Happy Talk” aka LIES!

    The Republican Party needs to capitalize on the issue if allowing ILLEGALS to be paid OUR tax money for these child tax credits in the 2014 election campaign and not doing anything to rectify it. Obviously they were coached by a Liberal organization to do this. This needs to be hi-lited big time in the campaign also.

    Also, the fact that they wanted the retirement income cuts for the veterans in the first place. Granted Ryan agreed to it in concession for something else but the Democrats proposed it. They were also the authors of the sequester cuts which cut so deeply into our military in the first place.

    There are many other things which need to be used in the campaign against the Democrats. I hope the Campaign Committee doesn’t blow it and allow all these issues be wasted during the campaign. You can bet the Democrats will NOT.

    • PaulE says:

      Yes HAM, “Happy Talk” does indeed mean lies. I guess I should have clarified that in my response to Clark.

      As for issues the Republican Party can and should leverage in both the 2014 and 2016 campaigns, the Democrats have provided a plethora to choose from. So it’s not like they have to struggle to find enough issues to contrast the conservative view of America versus the socialist (liberal) view for the voters. If anything, there are so many to choose from, that they should concentrate on only the top five or six. Otherwise, there is a risk the average low-information voter won’t be able to distinguish between them and grow frustrated and then end up just voting for the simple Democrat message. That message being “The “rich” have to pay their “fair share” and the Republicans are for the “rich”. “Rich” of course is left intentionally vague, so the average voter won’t realize it’s them. “Fair share” is also never defined, because the government can NEVER take enough of YOUR money to give to THEIR voter base.

      The only real question is will the Republican Party mount an intelligent, coordinated campaign or will they just think they can sit back and “of course the voters will all vote for us”. That was, in large part, their strategy in much of 2012. They assumed they could just “not be Obama” and cruise to victory. They didn’t fight the smear campaigns, the lies, the distortions until it was too late. They didn’t want to risk offending the mythical “independent voters”, who they think won’t “like them”, if they push back hard against Democrat lies and distortions and offer a sharp contrast to the Democrat vision of ever bigger, more expansive government.

      Right now, there is an internal struggle within the Republican Party for which members’ vision will win out going into 2014 and 2016. If the old guard wins, then yes they will blow what should be the best chance the Republicans have ever had to contrast conservatism versus socialism. The old guard really doesn’t believe in conservatism. They’re essentially Democrat-lite. If the minority conservative members manage to prevail, there is realistic hope that the country can yet be saved. We should know which group wins by March or April of 2014.

  3. Clark says:

    MY COMMENT IS THIS I HAVE SEVERAL YEARS AGO TRIED TO MEET WITH CHAIRWOMAN SENATOR PATTY MURRY.SHE HASN’T CHANGED A BIT. MY MEETING WAS THROUGH A SOMEWHAT PERSONAL INVITATION TO HAVE TEA WITH HER TO DISCUSS ISSUES THAT I AS A WIDOW OF A VETERAN HAD AND STILL AM FIGHTING FOR. IN FACT I GOT PUSHED OFF IF YOU WILL TOO MARY ELLEN MCCARTHY. WHICH LED TO HER TELLING ME I AM ENTITLED TO NOTHING!!! SO YOU TELL ME HOW CAN SUPPORT BE GIVEN TO ILLEGALS AND NOT TO VETERANS? OR THEIR FAMILIES?? CAN ANYONE EXPLAIN THIS?

    • PaulE says:

      “SO YOU TELL ME HOW CAN SUPPORT BE GIVEN TO ILLEGALS AND NOT TO VETERANS? OR THEIR FAMILIES?? CAN ANYONE EXPLAIN THIS?”

      I’ll try to answer your question. First you have to understand that Democrats are looking at which demographic group is going to give them the biggest bang for the buck in terms of voter turnout. That is the lens through which they make ALL decisions. Everything else is just “happy talk” to get members of what they consider to be unimportant groups to go away.The military and their families are, at least to Democrats, part of one of the unimportant groups. In genera and from a historical perspective, the military and their families have not been and are NOT currently big supporters of Democrats. The primary reason is obvious. Most Democrats only view the military as something they can cut back on to re-distribute those dollars to “more deserving groups”, i.e. likely Democrat voters.

      This brings us to illegal aliens and what the Democrats view as a long-term, game changing, demographic event and the most important group to cultivate. If the Democrats can somehow convince enough RINO Senators and weak-kneed Republican members in the House to pass what the Democrats affectionately call “comprehensive immigration reform” (de-facto amnesty to the rest of us) as a way for Republicans to pick up some Hispanic votes, then it’s game over for the Republican party at the federal level. Possibly at the state level in several states as well. With an additional 11 to 20 million illegals now made citizens and eligible to vote, the Republican party will be relegated to the status it had between 2008 and 2010, if not worse. Totally powerless to stop any of the Democrat agenda. Except this time, that would be the permanent state of affairs for decades to come. Numerically, we could never over-come that many additional Democrat votes at the federal level.

      So that is why Democrats care more about illegals than members of the military and their families. It’s all about votes and the pursuit of a permanent Democrat power base from which to pass, unrestricted, many more such laws like Obamacare, that would impact all areas of the economy and our lives.

      My question to you is at your meeting with the Senator were there photographers and pictures taken? If so, the so-called tea was nothing more than a pretense for her to be photographed with relatives of the military for political purposes. What they call a photo op in Washington. In that case, she wasn’t interested in hearing about any issues you may to have discussed. Which would explain how you ended up being “pushed off” to her staffer.

  4. PaulE says:

    The Democrats are just protecting a major part of their future voting base, once “comprehensive immigration reform” gets passed. All those illegals, who availed themselves of numerous taxpayer-funded entitlements certainly aren’t going to be rushing to the polls to vote Republican once they’re made citizens. Why do you think virtually every Democrat voted to block Session’s amendment? This party line vote shouldn’t have surprised anyone.

  5. Andrew says:

    And yet there are retired and active duty personnel who vote for these same senators and president. It always happens to Vets first then the rest of American citizens who are legitimately retired.

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