Ahead of budget vote, Sessions asks for details on food assistance for immigrants

“To assist Senators in their work on the budget, and as well as work on future government funding measures, it would be helpful to have certain additional details about the food stamp program as well as the 14 other nutrition-support programs administered by USDA,” Sessions wrote in a letter to Vilsack on Friday.

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Sessions has been asking Vilsack for information on the nutrition assistance program, called SNAP, for months. Sessions says taxpayers deserve to know how much of their money goes to supporting these programs and how much helps non-citizens.

Sessions pointed to the fact that illegal immigrants can apply for food assistance for their children who are U.S. citizens.

“Illegal immigrants can apply for food stamp benefits on behalf of eligible members of their households,” Sessions wrote. “To the extent that illegal immigrants do not have to expend their own resources to purchase food on behalf of others, they obviously benefit from that taxpayer-funded assistance.”

Sessions asked Vilsack for estimates of total SNAP benefits provided to households headed by an illegal immigrant on behalf of eligible dependents.

Sessions has proposed reduced spending on food assistance as a way to reduce the budget. He is the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee. The Senate will likely vote on Chairwoman Patty Murray’s (D-Wash.) budget later this week.