California Legislature Considers Free Health Care for Illegal Alien Seniors

Gavin Newsom (Justin Sullivan / Getty)

JOEL B. POLLAK

The California state legislature is considering a bill that would expand Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicare program, to illegal aliens over the age of 65 with low incomes.

Earlier this year, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill expanding Medi-Cal to illegal aliens 25 years old and younger with low enough incomes to qualify for the program. That fulfilled a pledge he made in his first act as governor to offer coverage to illegal aliens over 18 years old.

As Calmatters notes, Newsom balked at proposals earlier this year to expand Medi-Cal to elderly illegal aliens because of concerns about the cost, and because the proposal would pre-empt the governor’s budget proposals.

Calmat’s explains (original links):

The bill, authored by Los Angeles Democrat Maria Elena Durazo, would expand Medi-Cal—the state’s version of federal Medicaid  for low-income residents — to undocumented immigrants age 65 and older starting next July. That would inch the state closer to providing health care to all immigrants in the state illegally.

The governor hasn’t indicated whether he would sign this bill, despite his previous support for universal health care. Experts note that he might object to its attempt to lock him into new spending for next year’s budget.

The Newsom administration’s Finance Department opposes the bill, estimating it would cost an additional $163 million in next year’s budget and $255 million the following year, with costs projected to rise further as the senior population of undocumented immigrants grows. Nearly all of those costs would be born by state taxpayers because the federal government, which funds most of Medicaid, refuses to pay for services for people in the country illegally.

All of the Democratic Party frontrunners for president support providing free health care to illegal aliens; all ten presidential candidates on the stage at the second night of the first presidential debate in Miami, Florida, famously raised their hands to agree.

CALIF. DEMS PLAN TO EXTEND MEDICAID TO ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS

SOON COMING HERE TO ILLINOIS ALSO

Calif. Dems Plan to Extend Medicaid to Illegal Immigrants

Globalists destroying California

By Kimberly Leonard

A California lawmaker has pledged to re-introduce a bill that would allow adults who live in the state illegally to receive medical care paid for by the government.

State Assembly member Joaquin Arambula, a Democrat and a doctor, announced the plans Monday as the legislature convened at the state capitol, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Should the bill advance, California would become the first state to extend Medicaid coverage regardless of immigration status. State projections for last year’s bill found that 1.8 million people in California are uninsured and reside there illegally; roughly 1.2 million would qualify for Medi-Cal, the name of the state’s Medicaid program.

The legislation is being introduced ahead of a new governor entering office. Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom initially had vowed to seek a single-payer healthcare system for the state, but tamped down his rhetoric later in the campaign, focusing instead on extending coverage to the uninsured. Single-payer systems refer to one source of payment for all medical services, usually the government.

Arambula introduced a similar bill last session alongside state Sen. Ricardo Lara, but the final versions would have covered fewer people than they had both originally envisioned. They were narrowed to young adults, between the ages of 19 and 26, and to immigrants over the age of 65. Outgoing Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown refused to fund the provisions in the state budget.

The latest plan would carry an estimated price tag of $3 billion a year, according to California’s Legislative Analyst’s Office, which would be paid for by the state’s general fund. Medicaid is otherwise jointly funded by the state and federal governments.

Critics have questioned whether people in the U.S. illegally would move to California to receive healthcare benefits, which would increase state spending.

Under a Medicaid provision in Obamacare, anyone making less than roughly $17,000 a year qualifies for coverage. That provision, however, doesn’t apply to people who are in the U.S. illegally. Emergency departments provide medical care for people regardless of immigration status.

California has already extended Medicaid to people younger than 19 who are in the state illegally.

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