Fifteen Democrats in the New York State Assembly voted to halt a bill that would have provided free college tuition for Gold Star families.
The move comes just one week after lawmakers approved a $175 billion state budget that included a ‘Dream Act’ including $27 million in financial aid to students brought into the country illegally as children.
Bill number A02991 has a summary which states it “provides free tuition expenses for SUNY or CUNY to surviving dependent family members of NYS military personnel who have died while performing official military duties.”
The bipartisan piece of legislation was held in consideration by a vote of 15-11. All fifteen voting to hold it were Democrats. Seven Republicans and four Democrats voted to advance it to a floor vote.
Democrats just rejected tuition assistance for Gold Star families but approved it for illegal immigrants. Would these Democrats dare to look into the eyes of the children of fallen servicemen and women and say they matter less than those here illegally? https://t.co/813LozC9hJ
— New York GOP (@NewYorkGOP) April 11, 2019
Assemblyman Gary Finch called the vote “disgraceful,” while other lawmakers referred to it as outrageous to block a measure that would cost mere “hundreds of thousands of dollars to help children of military members who died for their country.”
“Soldiers who lay down their lives and make the ultimate sacrifice represent the best of us,” Finch lamented according to Syracuse.com. “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.”
Democrats countered that the scope of the bill made it unclear how many people would have qualified for the aid.
“The bill in question sought to extend this program to cover any service members killed or seriously disabled in any mishap while on duty,” Assemblywoman Deborah Glick complained.
Democrats have their priorities ALL WRONG. 1st they try to cut funding for veterans counseling. Now they kill bill to cover @SUNY & @CUNY tuition for children of military killed serving ONE WEEK after funding free college for illegal immigrants. https://t.co/0q8Y7vmQsq
— Nicole Malliotakis (@NMalliotakis) April 10, 2019
Assemblyman Will Barclay argued that the legislation would have made tuition aid available to roughly 500 or fewer New York college students.
College Tuition For Illegals
While the Gold Star family benefits would have extended to just 500 students at a total rate of “hundreds of thousands of dollars,” New York passed a budget which earmarked $27 million in state grants and loans accessible to students no matter their citizenship status.
New York passed funding college for illegal immigrants. Giving them 27 million. Yet they kill a bill that would help fund children of soldiers who died in action go to college. https://t.co/jjjLgAmbx3
— Wanabkay (@kaykahnup) April 10, 2019
Democrat Assemblywoman Carmen De La Rosa boasted, “To the dreamers, I say this: Today we do this for you. The door to higher education is open to all.”
Open to all … just not for the families of those who gave their lives for their country.