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Senate rejects Cruz effort to block stimulus checks for undocumented immigrants

The Senate voted along party lines Saturday morning to reject an amendment sponsored by Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzBoehner: Trump 'stepped all over their loyalty' by lying to followers The Memo: Biden's five biggest foreign policy challenges Boehner finally calls it as he sees it MORE (R-Texas), a potential 2024 White House candidate, to block $1,400 stimulus checks from going to undocumented immigrants.

The amendment failed by a vote of 49 to 50, with a slim majority of the Senate voting against it.

Eight Democrats had voted for a similar amendment sponsored by Sens. Todd YoungTodd Christopher YoungTo encourage innovation, Congress should pass two bills protecting important R&D tax provision Senate Republicans voice opposition to Biden on Iran Biden infrastructure proposal prioritizes funds for emerging technologies MORE (R-Ind.) and Tom CottonTom Bryant CottonMcConnell, GOP slam Biden's executive order on SCOTUS Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists POW/MIA flag moved back atop White House MORE (R-Ark.), another White House hopeful, early last month during a debate on the Senate budget resolution. However, the Democratic caucus stayed unified on Saturday in defeating the Republican amendment.

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All Republicans voted for it.

“This amendment before us today provides that the stimulus checks should not go to illegal aliens in this country,” Cruz said while introducing the amendment. “The question for the American people to answer is, should your money, should taxpayer money, be sent, $1,400, to every illegal alien in America?”

Senate Majority Whip Dick DurbinDick DurbinLawmakers say fixing border crisis is Biden's job Number of migrants detained at southern border reaches 15-year high: reports Grassley, Cornyn push for Senate border hearing MORE (D-Ill.) slammed the measure while accusing Cruz of exaggerating the flow of stimulus payments to undocumented immigrants. He pointed out that the pending $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill treats payments to families with undocumented immigrant members the same way as the $900 billion relief bill passed by the GOP-controlled Senate in December and signed into law by former President TrumpDonald TrumpGaetz was denied meeting with Trump: CNN Federal Reserve chair: Economy would have been 'so much worse' without COVID-19 relief bills Police in California city declare unlawful assembly amid 'white lives matter' protest MORE.

“The statement of the senator from Texas is just plain false. False! Let me be clear: Undocumented immigrants do not have Social Security numbers, and they do not qualify for stimulus relief checks,” he said.

Durbin accused Cruz and other Republicans of trying to collect political ammo for the campaign trail.

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“They want to be able to give speeches that say the checks go to undocumented people,” he said, accusing Cruz of trying to “rile people up over something that is not true.”

Eight Democrats voted for a similar effort sponsored by Young and Cotton to establish a reserve fund to bar illegal immigrants from receiving economic impact payments or other direct temporary assistance.

They were Sens. Maggie HassanMargaret (Maggie) HassanTo encourage innovation, Congress should pass two bills protecting important R&D tax provision Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists POW/MIA flag moved back atop White House MORE (D-N.H.), John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperOn The Trail: How marijuana went mainstream Senators press for answers in Space Command move decision Senate rejects Cruz effort to block stimulus checks for undocumented immigrants MORE (D-Colo.), Mark KellyMark KellyThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden assails 'epidemic' of gun violence amid SC, Texas shootings Democrats see opportunity as states push new voting rules Democratic county official joins race for Pennsylvania Senate seat MORE (D-Ariz.), Joe ManchinJoe ManchinBiden to meet Monday with bipartisan lawmakers about infrastructure Biden is thinking about building that wall — and that's a good thing Buttigieg on exaggerated infrastructure jobs estimate: 'I should have been more precise' MORE (D-W.Va.), Gary PetersGary PetersThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden: Let's make a deal on infrastructure, taxes Hillicon Valley: Intel heads to resume threats hearing scrapped under Trump | New small business coalition to urge action on antitrust policy | Amazon backs corporate tax hike to pay for infrastructure Senators call for update on investigations into SolarWinds, Microsoft hacks MORE (D-Mich.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowFive things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan Senators introduce bipartisan bill to expand electric vehicle charging tax credit Bottom line MORE (D-Mich.) and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden's infrastructure plan triggers definition debate Lawmakers say fixing border crisis is Biden's job Five things to watch on Biden infrastructure plan MORE (D-Mont.).

The amendment to the Senate budget resolution was later stripped out by a substitute amendment offered by Senate Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerNY Times beclowns itself by normalizing court-packing 'to balance the conservative majority' The first Southern state legalizes marijuana — what it means nationally H.R. 1/S. 1: Democrats defend their majorities, not honest elections MORE (D-N.Y.).