Obamacare Would Pay For Illegal Immigrant Health Care
The Associated Press’s Calvin Woodward published a FACT CHECK: Health overhaul myths taking root August 20th. In it he writes:
THE POLL: 55 percent expect the overhaul will give coverage to illegal immigrants; 34 percent don’t.
THE FACTS: The proposals being negotiated do not provide coverage for illegal immigrants.
55% of Americans are right and Woodward is wrong. While it is true that H.R. 3200 does not explicitly provide health care for illegal immigrants, no one is arguing that it does. What Americans are concerned about is that the enforcement provisions in the bill are too weak to make sure that illegal immigrants do not illegally obtain health care through the bill. Considering that millions of illegal immigrants already in the country because of inadequate enforcement of our immigration laws, it is entirely reasonable for Americans to question whether the enforcement mechanisms in the health bill will adequately protect their tax dollars from being used to pay for health benefits of non-citizens.
In the House Ways and Means mark up of H.R. 3200 Rep. Dean Heller (R-NV) introduced an amendment that would use two citizenship status verification systems, the Income and Eligibility Verification System (IEVS) and Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) programs, to establish an individual’s eligibility to obtain the bill’s proposed affordability credits or enroll in the public insurance option. Both programs are currently used to determine citizenship status and eligibility for other public assistance programs. Safeguards to guarantee that only citizens can access federal health care benefits are necessary, considering that the US Census Bureau currently estimates that 9.6 million of the uninsured are not US citizens. The Heller amendment failed on a straight party-line vote.
The Associated Press readers might want to know this little fact. Or maybe 55% of them already do.