California Democrats are looking to send a message to the rest of the nation when they worked out a bill to give illegal immigrants in their state healthcare coverage.
Governor Gavin Newsom agreed with the bill that, if signed, would make California the “only state in the nation to pay for the health care of thousands of illegal immigrants,” BizPac Review reports.
The proposal comes at a mountainous cost to the state’s taxpayers. From the report:
California’s Medicaid program, known as Medi-Cal, would become available to any low-income California resident between the ages of 19 and 25 beginning in January 2020 under the proposed bill, the Sacramento Bee reported. The plan states it would “extend eligibility for full-scope Medi-Cal benefits to individuals of all ages, if otherwise eligible for those benefits, but for their immigration status, and would delete provisions delaying eligibility and enrollment.”
Costing about $98 million per year, the bill which was part of an overall $213 billion budget, will use the “extraordinary” state budget surplus to now cover the health care of thousands living in the state illegally, though it will not include undocumented seniors.
“While it’s not all we sought, it will provide a real tangible difference for people, especially for those around and below poverty and for middle-income families who don’t get any help under the federal law,” Anthony Wright, executive director of advocacy group Health Access, said.
And, from the Sacramento Bee:
The budget includes a fine on people who don’t buy health insurance known as an individual mandate. The fines were initially implemented as part of the federal Affordable Care Act law known as Obamacare, but Republicans acted in 2017 to roll them back. Newsom and legislative leaders say re-imposing the penalty at the state level will shore up the state’s health insurance marketplace and keep premiums from rising dramatically.
Revenue from the mandate will fund insurance premium subsidies for middle-income people. The budget agreement also includes an additional $450 million over three years to fund insurance subsidies after some lawmakers argued mandate revenue alone wouldn’t make health insurance affordable.
BizPac Review reports conservatives are criticizing the bill as it not only comes at the expense of taxpayers but at the expense of ignoring other problems in the state.
“One glance at the formerly Golden State is a frightening embarrassment. The latest indictment of liberal leadership is the trash heap of Los Angeles,” Radio host and Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce said last month. “The state actually has a budget surplus, but as we see, money can’t cure stupid.”
Bruce slammed the state and its Democratic leadership for consistently ignoring the rampant homelessness and growing sanitation problems in cities like Los Angeles. Celebrity doctor Drew Pinsky warned of a deadly epidemic that could strike the city this summer, placing the blame on local politicians.
The growth of the homeless population and untended trash threaten Los Angeles as public health conditions worsen, with Pinsky adding that it is “likely” that the bubonic plague, the 14th-century pandemic that killed millions, already exists in the city.
“This is unbelievable. I can’t believe I live in a city where this is not Third World. This is medieval,” Pinsky told Fox News’ Laura Ingraham. “Third World countries are insulted if they are accused of being like this. No city on Earth tolerates this. The entire population is at risk.”