Feds Get Billed for Illegal-Alien Prisoners

This week Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire sent U.S. Atty. Gen. Alberto Gonzales a bill for $50 million — the state’s cost of imprisoning criminal illegal aliens in fiscal years 2005 and 2006.

Bravo! It’s about time Washington state requested the federal government fulfill its obligation on this issue. The governor correctly demanded “the U.S. government fulfill its legal duty to reimburse Washington State taxpayers for the cost of carrying out this federal function.”

To help the feds do their job on immigration control, Gregoire should also put an end to the fleecing of Washington taxpayers by eliminating state services and benefits for the state’s non-incarcerated illegal aliens. When not being faulted in state audits for illegally using federal money on illegal aliens (such as the recent Medicaid audit), the state has gone out of its way to provide state funds to those ineligible for federal dollars.

The governor’s invoice to the feds is long overdue and worthy of praise. Based on this effort, the next logical step is for Gregoire to ensure the state isn’t subverting federal immigration law and wasting state tax dollars in other areas by eliminating state services and benefits for non-legal individuals.

Perhaps the governor’s next effort will be tightening citizenship requirements for driver’s licenses and requiring proof of identification for voting. By reducing illegal aliens’ incentives to come and stay in Washington, we’ll help the feds by reducing the number in prison in the first place.