Democratic states earmarked over $500 million in COVID-19 aid to help illegal immigrants

Several Democratic states and cities have given more than $500 million of COVID-19 relief funds to illegal immigrants.

Most of the $517 million went to cash payments for immigrants in states including Washington, Illinois, and New Jersey and were drawn from the $1.9 trillion federal COVID-19 relief package, the American Rescue Plan, according to Fox News.

“This means the Biden Administration directly subsidized ‘undocumented’ immigration under the guise of COVID-19 pandemic relief,” according to a recent report from the Economic Policy Innovation Center on the funds in Washington state.

Washington state was the largest contributor and gave cash payments of $3,075 to more than 100,000 undocumented immigrants, according to a 2023 report from the Department of Social and Health Services. The state gave a total of $340 million in ARP funding to the immigrants.

“The COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund was highly publicized and repeatedly funded by the Legislature,” Mike Faulk, a spokesman for Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA), told Fox News. “It ran from 2020 to 2023. Folks would do well to familiarize themselves with the disparate health impacts that faced communities of color and immigrants during the pandemic. All Washingtonians were impacted by COVID regardless of where they came from, and our state was proud to help as many of our residents as possible during an unprecedented disaster.”

The Illinois state government allocated $71.8 million in ARP funds for cash payments to illegal immigrants, and Chicago marked $14.7 million for immigrants. An advertisement for the Chicago program even noted that “no questions will be asked in regards to citizenship or immigration status” of applicants.

New Jersey marked $60 million of the state’s ARP funds to go to illegal immigrants, including cash payments worth $2,000 per person, or up to $4,000 for each household. The payments went to thousands of recipients, and only those considered “excluded” residents qualified.

The term “excluded” referred to “undocumented individuals, residents re-entering from the justice system, and other individuals otherwise excluded from pandemic-related financial help,” according to the state government.


Boston, Denver, and Washington, D.C., have designated millions of ARP dollars to help with their immigration surges as well. D.C., which has seen a major influx of asylum-seekers, earmarked $26 million to help with the crisis.

The U.S. southern border has experienced historic crossings over the past two years, with the first quarter of fiscal 2024 reaching 785,000 encounters, the highest number ever recorded.

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