In the latest of a seemingly never-ending series of bills that cater to California’s illegal immigrants at the expense of its legal residents, Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) introduced S. 1005, the Health for All Act.
The Affordable Care Act prohibits illegal immigrants from accessing health benefits made available through the Covered California exchange. If passed, Lara’s bill would provide taxpayer-funded health care coverage to many of the state’s 2.6 million aliens, currently ineligible under the ACA.
S. 1005 proposes to use state money to expand Medi-Cal eligibility. It would then create an adjunct exchange run by Covered California officials to help low-income Californians, regardless of their immigration status, get state-subsidized coverage.
Without offering specifics, Lara estimates that his plan would cost less than the $1.4 billion the state spends providing emergency care to uninsured Californians.
Disingenuously, Lara argues that preventive health care would eliminate the need for many emergency services. But when the New England Journal of Medicine studied the relationship between preventive measures versus cost reduction, it found that savings claims like Lara’s are “overreaching” and “misleading.”
Diana Dooley, secretary of the state’s Health and Human Services Agency, insists that for now the priority is insuring people eligible for coverage under the Affordable Care Act.
Other health care storm fronts may be approaching. First, the ongoing congressional immigration debate could end in a blanket amnesty which would make the nation’s 12 million aliens ACA-eligible. Or, second, President Obama may make his 28th change to ACA, and through executive action, allow illegal immigrants to enroll.
Any legislation that offers more services to illegal immigrants threatens taxpayers since Governor Jerry Brown’s signature, assuming it reaches his desk, is probable.
Please go to the CAPS’ Action Alert page here. Send your representative a message that using your taxpayer dollars to provide health care for illegal immigrants is a terrible idea. California cannot afford to pay for the world’s health benefits.