California Democrats are reportedly pushing to give full healthcare benefits to illegal immigrant adults, which would mean that the Golden State not only may have to raise taxes but will also be a magnet for even more illegal immigrants.
According to a Monday Politico report, state Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) is leading the charge by reportedly arguing that “California needs to be a laboratory for social change by taking the lead on progressive causes.”
“We are trying to address the fact that, whether you like it or not, our undocumented community needs the care, and we are paying for it anyway,” he reportedly said.
Politico points out that California Democrats are trying to extend the state’s Medi-Cal program this legislative session to nearly 1.2 million illegal immigrant adults who would qualify for it, and “companion bills in the state Assembly and Senate” have already “passed their respective health committees with party-line votes.”
The cost to expand Medicaid coverage to adult illegal immigrants in California is reportedly projected to cost $3 billion annually.
California Governor Jerry Brown, who extended Medi-Cal coverage to illegal immigrant children in 2015, has not commented on the pending measures but “is required by law to sign or veto bills passed this session by Sept. 30, just five weeks before the midterm elections.”
Political and health analysts are reportedly astounded that Democrats are trying to extend healthcare benefits to illegal immigrants before this year’s important midterm elections, reportedly saying that the measure would give Republicans in California relevance “they would never have before” in an election cycle in which House races in California could decide which party controls Congress.
Paul Ginsburg, director of the USC-Brookings Schaeffer Initiative for Health Policy, told Politico that the proposal would be “fiscally very dangerous” and Jay Bhattacharya, a Stanford physician and health economist, suggested to the outlet that such a plan would have to be paid for with tax increases.
Bhattacharya also pointed out the obvious—giving full healthcare coverage to illegal immigrant adults will make California, which is already an official “sanctuary” state, even a greater magnet for illegal immigrants.
The illegal immigrant who murdered Kate Steinle, for instance, told authorities that he came to San Francisco after being previously deported five times because he knew San Francisco was proudly a “sanctuary city.”
“If you make a program like this available, undocumented workers in other states might be attracted to California because of this,” Bhattacharya, the Stanford physician, reportedly said.