Anxious to prove that he is fighting a war on terrorists and not on immigrants, US President George Bush has proposed to allow poor immigrants who have lived legally in the US for at least five years to collect food stamps. Since the attacks of 11 September, the government has detained over 1,100 "non-citizens", immigrants who are not yet citizens, for questioning, and the enforcement of immigration laws has been stepped up. Most immigrants have found themselves gradually excluded from a variety of welfare benefits since the mid-1990s, when Republicans in the Clinton administration began tightening the rules. Eager to balance the federal budget, about 800,000 immigrants were removed from food stamp rolls in August 1996.