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Second Stimulus Check and Immigration

In the previous few weeks, there have been talks of another stimulus bill, slightly below the radar of the ever-ramping news cycle. Part of this stimulus bill potentially includes another stimulus check of $1200 per person.

It is well known that the first check given out by the U.S. government in the CARES Act back in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic was not something that immigrants were eligible for. However, in the HEROS Act, which the U.S. House of Representatives has just passed. This is a stimulus bill that exceeds the CARES Act in its scope and cost.

Firstly, the CARES Act was about $2.2 trillion, whereas the HEROS Act cost about $3 trillion. In terms of its scope, it seems to be that the HEROS Act will focus more on ordinary American workers rather than businesses –mostly corporations, as the CARES Act had it.

Interestingly, one way in which the HEROS Act makes a departure from the CARES Act is that immigrants in the United States are included in the stimulus now. Under the Heroes Act, immigrants will receive $1200 per individual and $500 per dependent.

Some more details:

Furthermore, the HEROs bill provides undocumented immigrants protections, which would be unheard of under normal circumstances. They would be given immunity from deportation, authorized to work in the U.S. temporarily, and potentially even calling for the Customs Enforcement Agency to release any of the 30,000 detainees in the U.S.

None of this is in effect yet. The HEROS Act still needs to be passed by the Senate and then signed into law by the president. Political scientists generally find this unlikely, as the Senate and executive branch of the government are Republican-dominated, who have already made it clear that they will push back against the HEROS Act.

Nonetheless, it is still likely that some form of another stimulus package will be enacted at some point, as an upcoming election seems like a motivation for helping people during these difficult times.

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