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The Trump administration just keeps rolling out the terrible ideas, with a new proposed rule for federal housing subsidies that's likely to result in tens of thousands of children losing their homes. The proposed rule for the Department of Housing and Urban Development would require that all members of any household getting subsidies be citizens or legal residents, which could lead to evictions of many families -- including those with American-born children who are citizens. How's that for GREAT AGAIN, huh?

Federal law already prohibits noncitizens from getting housing subsidies, but allows families with mixed immigration status to live in public housing or receive rent vouchers as long as at least one member of the family is a citizen or legal resident. The subsidies are then prorated, so only eligible family members get the subsidy. The new rule -- pushed by Trump's top immigration ghoul Stephen Miller, of course -- seeks to evict all undocumented residents, even though they aren't getting any taxpayer money, because THE LAW IS THE LAW, at least for brown people.

Problem is, HUD's own analysis of the effects of the rule indicates that roughly half of those who end up being kicked out are children, most of them holding legal status. The analysis predicts many families will become at least temporarily homeless; isn't that great?

Undocumented immigrants may no longer sign the leases of subsidized housing, even if their children are entitled to prorated benefits.

Approximately 25,000 households, representing about 108,000 people, now living in subsidized housing have at least one ineligible member, according to the HUD analysis.

Among these mixed-status households, 70 percent, or 76,000 people, are legally eligible for benefits — of whom 55,000 are children, HUD says. The vast majority live in California, Texas and New York.

Got that? Less than a third of the people in those mixed-status households are undocumented. So to punish them, we'll evict everyone, including their citizen children. Serves those kids right for not checking their parents' immigration status before getting born. Haha, we are joking -- Trump wants to eliminate birthright citizenship anyway, so really, this is just treating those kids like the noncitizens they should be, anyway, because the law is the law except when Donald Trump doesn't like the law.


The proposed rule also involves some beautiful lies about how hurting 76,000 Americans would be very good for other Americans: HUD Secretary Ben Carson has touted the new policy as a way to decrease long waiting lists for subsidized housing, so that Real Americans will get housing sooner. Except, whoops, the net effect of the rule is likely to be more expense to HUD, because if everyone in a household qualifies for subsidies, HUD's outlay for subsidies will increase between $193 million and $227 million annually.

Also too, since Congress is unlikely to appropriate more money, HUD's analysis says the agency will have to "reduce the quantity and quality of assisted housing in response to higher costs," which means less housing and shittier housing -- probably a good thing, too, since if being poor sucks, those people will all stop being poor.

As a result, the analysis said, "there could be fewer households served under the housing choice vouchers program" — contrary to the Trump administration's stated goal of getting more families off the years-long waiting lists for housing assistance. [...]

For public housing complexes, the increased costs imposed by the rule would hurt the quality of service, maintenance of units and "possibly deterioration of the units that could lead to vacancy," HUD said.

Still, it's probably all worth it in the end, since the analysis notes the real reason for the rule:

"HUD expects that fear of the family being separated would lead to prompt evacuation by most mixed households," the agency's analysis said. "Temporary homelessness could arise for a household, if they are unable to find alternative housing."

Totally worth making public housing more expensive, throwing children out of their homes, and not actually doing anything to help the 100-percent American families on waiting lists. But it'll cause pain, so it's obviously a great idea.

In fact, maybe mixed families will all eventually decide that life is so hard here that they'll "self-deport," and then won't Mitt Romney be ready for his victory lap? Truly, America will be a paradise on Earth.

The proposed regulation is subject to a 60-day public comment period before HUD ignores the comments and rams through the new rule. Then it'll be lawsuit time. Rule of law and all that.

[Mother Jones / WaPo / Federal Register / Comment on proposed rule]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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