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Political Editors / April 12, 2019

Illegal Aliens Get Demo Money — Veterans, Not So Much

New York lawmakers reject a tuition-aid program to children of veterans killed in action.

Leftists and their policies have increasingly favored noncitizens over citizens, but Democrats in New York may well have set a new low. New York’s Higher Education Committee this week voted against advancing a bipartisan bill that would have provided free college tuition to the families of veterans killed in the line of duty. That’s bad enough, but this was after state lawmakers just last week passed a $175 billion budget that included $27 million in tuition aid to children of illegal aliens. By contrast, a few hundred thousand dollars will not be added to the existing program for 145 vets’ kids, which currently costs just $2.7 million — a mere tenth of the tuition aid that the state’s illegals will receive.

Several Republican lawmakers weren’t happy, and they blasted their Democrat counterparts. Assemblyman Gary Finch may have said it best: “It’s disgraceful. Soldiers who lay down their lives and make the ultimate sacrifice represent the best of us. The children they love so dearly deserve access to the opportunity and promise that is the hallmark of this country. I can’t imagine what’s in your heart when you vote ‘no’ on a bill like this.”

Republican Assemblyman Will Barclay, one of the bill’s cosponsors, surmised that partisanship was the real reason behind the Democrats’ “no” vote. “We get so caught up in majority and minority issues here, we can’t see the forest through the trees,” he said, adding, “I don’t know how they don’t justify this.”

Assemblywoman Deborah Glick (D), who chairs the committee and voted against the bill, claimed that concerns over the budget weighed against expanding the veteran tuition-aid program. But state Sen. Robert Ortt (R) wasn’t buying it: “Assemblywoman Glick should be ashamed of herself. We set aside $27 million for college for people that are here illegally. … Apparently $2.7 million is all that the families of soldiers who are killed get. If you’re a child of a fallen soldier, you do not rank as high and you know that by the money.”

Indeed, “Show me your budget and I’ll tell you what you value” is a common refrain used by Joe Biden and other free-spending leftists, and it tells us all we need to know about “progressive” values. It would’ve been one thing if Democrats had refused to fund either program, as their fiscal concerns would’ve at least been believable. But giving handouts to those who aren’t even here legally while stiffing the children of Patriots who’ve given their lives for this great nation is simply despicable.

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