Sen. Vitter
Sen. Vitter

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On Tuesday, Sen. Vitter (R-La.) took the fight to end a massive tax loophole that allows illegal aliens to receive thousands of dollars in tax refunds to the Senate floor. The loophole allows anyone who has an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to claim children on their income tax filings, enabling them to receive up to a $1,000 tax credit for every child they list. Sen. Vitter's bill (S.577) would require anyone who claims the credit to have a valid Social Security number.

National attention was brought to the issue a few weeks ago when an Indianapolis television station produced a lengthy report shedding light on the tax loophole and how illegal aliens are taking advantage of it. Since then, the House included a bill similar to Sen. Vitter's to its Budget Reconciliation package that passed two weeks ago.

The Treasury Department's Inspector General estimated in 2011 that the tax loophole costs U.S. taxpayers more than $4 billion per year.

Abuse of this tax benefit is one of the most ridiculous things adding to our federal deficit and incentivizing illegal aliens to come to America. We have a simple solution to a $4.2 billion problem, and the common-sense thing to do in the Senate would be to pass our legislation without any objection.

-- Sen. Vitter, Senate floor on May 22, 2012

Social Security numbers are only issued to U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents, and certain temporary visa holders.

Illegal Immigration
Attrition through Enforcement
Taxpayer Burden