Skip to main content
Front of the Capitol building

Issa Statement on Egregious California Unemployment Benefits Fraud

February 5, 2021


Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Darrell Issa (CA-50) joined 11 California Congressional colleagues led by Rep. Michelle Steel (CA-48) in calling for answers and correction from the State of California regarding recent reports of unemployment fraud:

“In one of the most egregious examples of State mismanagement in our history, the California Employment Development Department has handed out at least $11 billion in fraudulent payments — a twin betrayal of both taxpayers and individuals who need and deserve these benefits. When the full extent of the damage is known, the toll is estimated to be as much as $30 billion.

“Payments have gone to death row inmates and organized crime in foreign countries. In one audit example, a single address received more than 80 claims. Despite repeated warnings of fraud and even outright theft, the State hesitated when it should have acted - then panicked by pausing legitimate benefits for millions of residents.  

“Enough is enough. We need answers, accountability and immediate reform.”

Please read the complete letter to Governor Newsom, California Secretary of Labor Julie Su, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, and EDD Director Rita Saenz.