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IRS Internal Data Shows Prisoners Received At Least $1.3B in COVID Stimulus Checks

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) building stands in Washington, D.C., on April 15, 2019. (Zach Gibson/Getty Images)
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) building stands in Washington, D.C., on April 15, 2019. (Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan paid out COVID-19 stimulus checks totaling at least $1.3 billion to more than 1.1 million prison inmates, including about 163,000 people serving life sentences without a possibility of parole, according to internal data provided by the IRS to Rep. Don Bacon.

“The American Rescue Plan was reckless in the amount of massive spending with no off-sets,” the Nebraska Republican told The Washington Free Beacon, which obtained a copy of a letter he got from the IRS. “Giving stimulus checks to death row inmates is a glaring example. This bill triggered the worst inflation in 41 years, costing the average family $500 a month. The poor suffer the most.”

In the letter detailing the awards, IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig said that his agency does not possess data on how many of those individuals with life sentences who got stimulus money may also be facing the death penalty.

Last year, Bacon and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., warned that the American Rescue Plan, or President Joe Biden’s nearly $2 trillion stimulus package, did not include appropriate limits.

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