Commentary: Response offered to recent commentary supporting Trump

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Only have a minute? Listen instead

This is in response to letter by Mr. Gorena on March 2.

Mr. Gorena and MAGA Republicans are so obsessed with immigration that they resort to spreading misinformation about it in an effort to blame President Biden. A typical example of this spreading of lies about the border crisis is Republican senator from Alabama Katie Britt’s response to the president’s State of the Union speech. She blatantly lied, trying to blame President Biden for something that happened 20 years ago.

Both documented and undocumented immigrants pay more into public benefit programs than they take out. According to Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, undocumented immigrants contribute an estimated $11.74 billion to state and local economies each year. However, undocumented immigrants are not eligible for many of the federal or state benefits that their tax dollars help fund.

It is true that lately legal (asylum) and illegal immigration is very high. It is also notable that 143,000 immigrants were deported by the Biden administration in 2023 alone.

Contrary to what many right wing propaganda sources say, undocumented immigrants, including DACA permit holders, are ineligible to receive most federal public benefits, including means-tested benefits such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (sometimes referred to as food stamps), regular Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. Undocumented immigrants are ineligible for healthcare subsidies under the Affordable Care Act and are prohibited from purchasing unsubsidized health coverage on ACA exchanges. Non-citizens who have qualified alien immigration status are eligible for food stamps.

Undocumented immigrants cannot vote in state or federal elections; you must be a citizen to vote. Assuming they will vote Democrat if and when they become citizens many years later is an assumption without any evidence.

The U.S. government does not provide free phone to undocumented immigrants. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, a division of the Department of Homeland Security, does issue smartphones with a pre-loaded app to some undocumented immigrants to ensure compliance with release stipulations. But the phones can only be used to access the app – they can’t access the internet, load other apps or make calls. And use of them dates back to the Trump administration

Contrary to the belief that “our religion” is being attacked, current Republican members of Congress are trying to force their personal religion on everyone else. In the U.S., freedom of religion means freedom for all religions.

The real indoctrination of children in schools that is taking place in some states is the fascist-like banning of books and the denial of factual history. According to the American Library Association, 2,571 books in 2022 and 4,240 books in 2023 have been targeted.

Trump and the MAGA Republicans are repeating over and over again that the cost of living is terrible. Yes, it is in some areas, but look around: The restaurants are packed, new cars and trucks are all over the place, people are paying hundreds of dollars to watch sports and entertainment events. People complain about the price of eggs but don’t mind paying $6 for a cup of coffee. The economy under President Joe Biden is getting better and better every day. Unemployment is at a historic low and the stock market is also on historic highs.

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump speaks at a primary election night party at the South Carolina State Fairgrounds in Columbia, S.C., Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

We are definitely better off today than four years ago when a clueless Trump didn’t know what to do about thousands of people dying from COVID every day.

The MAGAs have been spreading the conspiracy lies that President Biden got illegal money from Ukraine. They’ve been repeating Kickback, kickback, kickback over and over again until they believe it. The problem is that after more than a year of investigations by the MAGAs in the House of Representatives, no wrongdoing of any kind has been found.

Our borders are indeed boiling over. When a solution was worked out by a bipartisan Congress, it was killed under orders from Trump. Trump and MAGA Republicans put politics ahead of national security.

Keep in mind that currently asylum is legal. Anyone who reaches our border has a right to claim asylum and have their case heard before a court. This law would have been modified to hasten the process and quickly reject false claims. Thanks to Trump and the MAGA, this will not go into effect.

If you want to stop the crises on the border, don’t vote for MAGA Republicans; they have proven they really don’t care what happens at the border. Their priority is staying in office.

We cannot go back to the chaos of the Trump years. The following is an exact quote from Donald Trump: “Massive fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution.” Trump and his MAGA cult are not patriots. America First is just a phony talking point for them.

The Constitution and the rule of law are basic elements for our democratic form of government to survive. We cannot vote for a president who’s ready to trash them.


Beto Conde lives in Rancho Viejo.

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