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Ayanna Pressley: Next coronavirus stimulus should support illegal immigrants

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Jason Hopkins on April 7, 2020

Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Ayanna Pressley said she wants the next coronavirus stimulus package that Congress passes to provide funds for illegal aliens.

Speaking to an MSNBC reporter on Tuesday, Pressley said she wants to see the next COVID-19 relief package to include a greater number of “vulnerable populations,” such as the homeless, men and women in jail, and those living in the U.S. illegally.

“We need to continue to make federal investments in our community health centers,” the first-term lawmaker said. “We need to center the humanity of every individual family and workers and that includes not leaving behind undocumented and uninsured.”

“We have to continue to make investments to support vulnerable populations like those experiencing homelessness, incarcerated men and women,” she continued. “We’re focused right now making sure the CARES Act in its implementation is one that is in urgent need and mitigating the hurt that so many of our families are experiencing — all of our families are experiencing right now.”

Congress passed a $2.2 trillion relief bill, known as the CARES Act, in late March, providing major financial assistance to Americans struggling under the coronavirus pandemic. The stimulus bill includes a $1,200 payout to all U.S. citizens and allocates $350 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses.

However, many Democrats have bemoaned the fact that the package excludes those living in the U.S. illegally.

A group of Democratic lawmakers in the House have already introduced legislation that would allow illegal aliens to obtain the benefits included in the bill. Pressley was not among the 50 lawmakers who co-sponsored this bill — including the three other members of the so-called “squad.”

A number of other localities and states, such as California and Chicago, have established separate funds to financially support illegal aliens living in their jurisdictions.

Pressley noted on Tuesday that a lot of Americans are hurting right now under coronavirus pandemic.

“The gravity of it and our responsibility at the moment is overwhelming. There’s a lot of hurt. And so we have a lot of work to do to meet the scale and scope of that hurt,” she said.

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