28 GOP Senators Fight to Block Payments to Illegal Immigrants Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., speaking on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. (Jim Lo Scalzo /POOL /AFP via Getty Images)
Twenty-eight Senate Republicans introduced an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) on Wednesday to "block President Biden’s reported plan to spend upwards of a billion dollars to provide $450,000 per person in taxpayer money for settlements with illegal immigrants."
The legislation comes in response to the Biden administration’s reported intention to resolve lawsuits by paying families as much as nearly $1 million who were separated at the U.S.-Mexico border in 2018 under the Trump administration.
Approximately 2,800 children were removed from their parents’ custody under the 2018 policy, according to a report from the Department of Homeland Security.
“The Biden administration is in complete denial of the crisis their policies have created at our border,” said Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., one of the nearly three dozen co-sponsors. “Offering money to those who break the law will only create a magnet for more illegal immigration."
Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., decried the amount proposed is quadruple the death benefit the government pays the families of military service members killed on duty.
“Biden wants to give illegal aliens over four times more money than our Gold Star families that have paid the ultimate sacrifice,” she said. “It is downright shameful that time and again [Biden] chooses to put illegals over law abiding and hardworking Americans."
The NDAA is annual legislation that authorizes spending and activities for the military and defense-related items for the Department of Energy.
“These settlement payments should never have been considered in the first place, but because we can’t rely on the Biden administration to make the right decision, Congress needs to step in to ensure they don’t happen,” Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said.
"Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no federal funds may be used for settlement payments to individuals who, as a result of their violation of section 275(a) 9 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 10 1325(a))," the amendment reads.
Many who sponsored the amendment mocked the suggestion by saying it only encourages illegal activity and worsen the situation at the southern border.
“Incentivizing this type of crime will only exacerbate the crisis at our southern border, and Americans’ tax dollars should not fund this ridiculous stunt led by the Biden Administration,” said Sen. Roger Marshall, R-Kansas.
Logan Ratick is a national correspondent for Newsmax based in Washington. He covers Capitol Hill and has traveled across the country since joining the network in 2020, reporting from the southern border, CPAC, and the U.S. Senate elections in Georgia. Previously, Logan anchored and reported for WTRF-TV, where he covered Joe Biden's first rally for president in Pittsburgh and reported on national politics for SaraACarter.com. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.