Thursday, August 18

U.S. MARINE VETERAN DENIED IN-STATE TUITION IN TEXAS

If this doesn't make the point about all that's egregiously wrong in this country with regard to illegal immigration and the convoluted mantra of open borders' apologists, then I don't know what will.

The "Houston Chronicle" (registration required) reports this morning in an Associated Press (AP) story that a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, decorated for his courageous service during two tours of duty in Iraq, and a Texas native no less who holds a Texas driver's license, is a registered voter in Travis County, and does his personal banking in Austin, Texas, has been denied the lower in-state tuition at Austin Community College, where he is enrolled.

Here's an excerpt:

Carl Basham said officials at Austin Community College told him that his two tours of duty in Iraq kept him out of the state too long to qualify for Texas resident tuition.

Privacy laws prevent college officials from specifically discussing Basham's case, but Austin Community College spokesman Dwayne Cox said it's not Basham's military tours that keep him from meeting in-state residence requirements.

Under Texas law, members of the military are presumed to maintain the same residence as when they enlisted in the service. Although he grew up throughout Texas, mostly in Waco, Basham graduated from high school and enlisted in the Marine Corps in Monroe, La.

The school's response surprised Basham, 27, who was born in Beeville, is registered to vote in Travis County and does his banking in Austin.

Not having the in-state designation would mean paying about $2,600 instead of about $500 a semester in tuition.

It's unclear how many returning service members face the same problem as Basham, said Ray Grasshoff, a spokesman for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. But officials at the agency are looking into Basham's case.

Now, then, I'd like you to read the following by Phillis Schlafly to put this rebuff in the perspective of the times in which we live:

The officials of some state universities and colleges, and even some state legislators, seem to think they can get by with openly disobeying federal law. They are flagrantly violating the law that prohibits giving subsidized college tuition rates to illegal aliens.

Shouldn't our public officials, of all people, respect the rule of law? Texas, California, New York and Utah have legislatively thumbed their noses at the federal law by passing a state law that grants in- state tuition rates to people living in our country illegally.

This gives a taxpayer benefit to illegal aliens that is denied to U.S. citizens in the 49 other states. The monetary difference, which varies from state to state, can be as high as $11,000 per year, and this windfall is given even though most state governments are crying about budget shortfalls because of the current state of our economy.

Federal law (Title 8, Chapter 14, Sec. 1623) states: "an alien who is not lawfully present in the United States shall not be eligible on the basis of residence within a State ... for any postsecondary education benefit unless a citizen or national of the United States is eligible for such a benefit (in no less an amount, duration, and scope) without regard to whether the citizen or national is such a resident."