The assault on our nation’s rule of law continues unabated as federal and state officials try to make foreigners who live here illegally as welcome as possible. One of these lawmakers for lawbreakers is California Assemblyman Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville).
|California Assemblyman Luis Alejo|
Alejo has proposed legislation which would make it easier for illegal aliens to file tax returns, even though it is unlawful for them to work in the United States. Assembly Bill (AB) 2014, the euphemistic “California Opportunity and Prosperity Act,” would have the governor of California pressure the federal government not to deport illegal aliens who file taxes (unless they commit serious or violent felonies), and also award them work permits.
It doesn’t seem to matter to Alejo that the state government of California has no authority to issue these permits to illegal workers. That’s a direct violation of federal law, which supersedes state law. Interestingly, the Obama Administration claims that states have no right to legislate on illegal immigration, even when their laws are consistent with federal statutes. But will the administration mind if Alejo’s bill passes? Don’t hold your breath.
The fact of the matter is that the administration has no respect for federal law, except when it wants to hamstring state action to tackle illegal immigration. Since coming to office, President Obama has systematically sabotaged immigration law enforcement. And while ignoring the authority of Congress to make law, he has arbitrarily granted legal status and work permits to illegal aliens in the Dream Act category.
Alejo says he’s moving forward with his bill now because he’s impatient with the refusal of Congress to grant a general amnesty for illegal aliens. He says he hopes that Obama will assist him. Given the president’s record, that hope is a very reasonable expectation. Obama indeed has threatened to use his “phone” and his “pen” to decree amnesty if Congress doesn’t go along.
Specifically what Alejo proposes for tax filing is to encourage illegal aliens to use Tax Identification Numbers (ITINs) because aliens are not legally entitled to have Social Security numbers, which citizens use for filing. The ITINs have an interesting, and disturbing, history. They were set forth in 1996 as a means to allow nonresident foreigners to pay taxes on U.S. investments. But the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) extended their use to resident foreigners, including illegal aliens.
Since then illegal aliens have made extensive use of ITINs, often making fraudulent claims for dependents to collect tax refunds under the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) provision. In 2011, a Treasury Department report estimated that the IRS refunded $4.2 billion to illegal aliens under ACTC during the previous year. Despite its knowledge of the widespread fraud involved, the IRS doesn’t seem particularly concerned. Indeed it will not share information it has about illegal aliens with immigration authorities, even though federal law requires agencies to do so.
Most ironically, when it comes to Americans paying their taxes, the IRS is a stickler for enforcing the letter of the law. Citizens are second class as taxpayers, it would seem.
One justification Alejo offers for his bill is that illegal aliens should be encouraged to stay because they pay lots of money into the system. But in truth they take out much more than they put in. The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy claims that illegal aliens in California pay a total of $2.2 billion a year in local and state taxes. This estimate exaggerates the money they pay in sales and property taxes, but for the sake of argument, let’s say it’s accurate.
To get an idea of the costs, one might consider that illegal aliens just in Los Angeles County, according to County Supervisor Michael Antonovich, use almost $2 billion a year in public services including welfare, health care and education. They are only about a third of the total illegal alien population in the state. Thus illegal aliens financially drain the system by a ratio approaching three to one.
Politicians and bureaucrats who twist the law to promote lawlessness immigration are subverting our system of government. Anarchy and bankruptcy lie ahead as this lawlessness unfolds.