WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today cosponsored efforts to block President Biden’s reported plan to spend an estimated $1 billion to provide $450,000 per person in taxpayer money for settlements for illegal immigrants.

The Mississippi Senators are original cosponsors of the Prohibiting Taxpayer Funded Settlements for Illegal Immigrants Act, which was introduced as a stand-alone bill and as an amendment to the FY2022 National Defense Authorization Act.

“During the worst border crisis in decades, the last thing this country needs is to use taxpayer funds to add fuel to the fire,” Wicker said.  “The Biden Administration should be focused on stopping the flow of people across our border, not giving new incentives to migrants who are considering making the journey.”

“It’s truly mindboggling to think the Biden administration wants to give illegal immigrants six-figure payouts for crossing our border illegally—more than what’s offered to the families of our fallen troops,” Hyde-Smith said.  “The worst of the President’s ongoing border crisis is yet to come if his administration makes these outrageous payments, which will be seen as another signal that the United States has opened its borders.”

The legislation follows reports that the Biden administration is considering providing settlements to members of immigrant families who crossed the border illegally and were separated as a result of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” border security policy. 

The payments, estimated at $1 million per family, would cost around $1 billion in total.  The proposed payout value far exceeds the $100,000 payments given to families of service members who are killed in action and some families of 9/11 victims.  

Senator Steve Daines (R-Mont.) authored the legislation, which is also supported by Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Republican Senators Tom Cotton (Ark.), John Kennedy (La.), Mike Lee (Utah), Ron Johnson (Wis.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Bill Cassidy (La.), Cynthia Lummis (Wyo.), Mike Braun (Ind.), Kevin Cramer (N.D.), John Hoeven (N.D.), Todd Young (Ind.), Pat Toomey (Pa.), Marco Rubio (Fla.), Joni Ernst (Iowa), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), John Boozman (Ark.), Susan Collins (Maine), Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), Richard Burr (N.C.), James Lankford (Okla.), Roger Marshall (Kan.), Tommy Tuberville (Ala.), Jim Risch (Idaho) and Mike Crapo (Idaho).