We’ve already noted that Louisiana Senator David Vitter used the same photos of “illegal immigrants” in an ad that was used by Nevada’s Sharron Angle used, even though the photo did not depict actual immigrants. Another Vitter spot has his opponent, Charlie Melancon, “welcoming” boarder-crossers to America with a giant check, and a limousine ride. The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in Louisiana blasts the ad as “demeaning” and “racist.” (via Plum Line)
The ad is wrong on the facts:
“Melancon voted to make it easier to get taxpayer-funded benefits for illegals…” Based on the citation in the ad, this vote would have “required affordable-housing beneficiaries to show proof of legal residency.” But undocumented immigrants are already ineligible for affordable housing or any other federal benefits, and the amendment was part of a motion to recommit, generally the last attempt by the minority to keep a bill from a final vote, that fell along party lines. Melancon has actually voted to prevent unauthorized immigrants from receiving affordable housing benefits.
“…and actual welfare checks.” This vote was meant to prevent unauthorized immigrants from receiving the Earned Income Tax Credit. The EITC was actually a Republican idea, meant to be an alternative to traditional welfare. This amendment was also part of a motion to recommit, in other words, another Republican attempt to kill the bill in question. You have to be a legal resident in order to claim the EITC.