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Analysis of Sessions Amendment to Deny the EITC to Many Legal Permanent Residents (Amendment # 1235)

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Publication Date: June 2007

Publisher(s): Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (Washington, D.C.)

Author(s): Aviva Aron-Dine; Sharon Parrott

Special Collection: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Topic: Labor (Employment and labor supply)
Population and demographics (Immigrants and aliens)

Keywords: Economic projections; Tax code; International migration; Income diversity

Type: Report


The amendment also would deny the EITC to certain other categories of legal immigrants — regardless of how long they have resided in the United States — including some immigrants who are victims of human trafficking. In these respects, Senator Sessions’ amendment goes well beyond another severe amendment he has introduced this year. That amendment (amendment no. 1234) — which is similar to an amendment Senator Sessions introduced during last year’s immigration debate and which was defeated last year by a bipartisan vote of 60 to 37 — would deny the EITC to guest workers and workers who convert to legal status under the provisions of the Senate bill. Under both of the two Sessions amendments, millions of legal immigrants would be required to pay income and payroll taxes in the same manner as other workers, but would be denied the use of a tax credit that is intended to offset the heavy tax burdens that low-income working families would otherwise face. In a sharp departure from the longstanding federal tax principle of applying the same rules to everyone who works in the United States lawfully, these workers would effectively be taxed at much higher rates than other workers with the same family situations and incomes.