CIS Director of Research Steven Camarota now that the cost to taxpayers will be even more because the roughly 500,000 to 600,000 illegal aliens released into the U.S. interior this year would be eligible to receive $800 million in cash payments as a result of the tax credits.
In an October analysis, we estimated that illegal immigrants would receive $8.2 billion in cash payments from the expanded Child Tax Credit (CTC), which is part of budget reconciliation bill, also referred to as the Build Back Better (BBB) Act.
That analysis assumed cash payments would be limited to illegal immigrants with U.S.-born children, as is the case with the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) it replaces. But the current version of the BBB Act repeals p. 1,452, line 14, the requirement that children claimed as dependents need Social Security numbers (SSNs). As a result, illegal immigrants whose children are illegal immigrants as well will receive an estimated $1.5 billion in payments from the new program.
The elimination of the SSN requirement also allows the more than 600,000 illegal immigrants encountered at the border in family units or as unaccompanied minors and released in FY 2021 to receive cash payments from the new CTC. We roughly estimate these new arrivals will receive slightly less than $800 million from the program, for a total of $10.5 billion in cash payments to illegal immigrants here in 2020 or released into the country in FY 2021. Receipt of payments under the new CTC is made all the easier because the BBB eliminates the work requirement of the old ACTC.
Camarota estimates that nearly 8-in-10 illegal alien families in the U.S. have incomes low enough to receive cash from the tax credits, securing an average payment of $5,300 per family or $2,600 per child.
Democrats and Biden are pushing the plan despite opposition from most Americans. A recent Morning Consult survey found that 52 percent of registered U.S. voters are opposed to making the tax credits permanent. Likewise, a survey from the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) found that 2-in-3 voters are opposed to the tax credits when they are told the amount of money it will provide to illegal aliens.