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ICYMI: Womack Demands Answers from Biden Administration on Reports of Payments to Illegal Migrants

Washington, DC—November 2, 2021….Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) joined Congressman Fred Upton (MI-6) and other Republican lawmakers in demanding answers from Attorney General Merrick Garland, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra following reports stating the Biden Administration is considering paying $450,000 per person to families who illegally crossed the southern border in 2018. According to a Wall Street Journal exclusive report, these payments could exceed one million dollars per family, and potentially billions in taxpayer dollars in total. In fact, $450,000 is more than Gold Star families and some 9/11 victims have received in compensation.

Congressman Womack said, “Rewarding illegal immigrants with hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars is the ultimate insult to law-abiding citizens. It’s an absurd proposal in general. No less, during the midst of a record-breaking crisis at our southern border. These reports have yet to be denied by the Biden Administration. We need answers, and I intend to get them.”

The letter states the absurdity of the alleged idea and calls for answers to the following questions:

  1. Is the reporting correct, and could families who illegally crossed the southern border and were separated receive larger settlements than the victims of the September 11th terrorist attack?
  2. What is the total amount of American taxpayer dollars that the administration plans to authorize to settle these cases?
  3. Will those families who illegally crossed the southern border and were separated be given preferential treatment to remain in the United States over those attempting to legally immigrate?

Read the full letter here.

Womack has been a steadfast advocate of border security and committed to legislatively enacting strong reforms to fully revamp our immigration policies. He has seen the devastation at the southern border firsthand, voted to authorize border wall construction, called for reinstating the “Remain in Mexico” policy, expressed the need for elimination of “Catch and Release” measures, and previously supported comprehensive proposals that would have delivered a working, lawful, and effective immigration system.

Since President Biden took office, there have been over 1.4 million illegal border crossings. September marked the seventh straight month with more than 170,000 apprehensions, a trend never before recorded. There were roughly 192,000 apprehensions at the southern border in September. This is a 233 percent increase compared to September 2020.

Congressman Steve Womack (AR-3) has represented Arkansas’s Third Congressional District since 2011. He is a member of the House Appropriations Committee.



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