It Pays to be Illegal in California
Jennifer G. Hickey
It certainly is a good time to be an illegal alien in California. Democratic State Sen. Ricardo Lara last week pitched a bill to permit illegal immigrants to serve on all state and local boards and commissions. This week, lawmakers unveiled a $1 billion health care plan that would include spending $250 million to extend health care coverage to all illegal alien adults.“Currently, undocumented adults are explicitly and unjustly locked out of healthcare due to their immigration status. In a matter of weeks, California legislators will have a decisive opportunity to reverse that cruel and counterproductive fact,” Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula said in Monday’s Sacramento Bee.His legislation, Assembly Bill 2965, would give as many as 114,000 uninsured illegal aliens access to Medi-Cal programs. A companion bill has been sponsored by State Sen. Richard Lara.But that could just be a drop in the bucket. The Democrats’ plan covers more than 100,000 illegal aliens with annual incomes bless than $25,000, however an estimated 1.3 million might be eligible based on their earnings.In addition, it is estimated that 20 percent of those living in California illegally are uninsured – the $250 million covers just 11 percent.So, will politicians soon be asking California taxpayers once again to dip into their pockets to pay for the remaining 9 percent?Before they ask for more, Democrats have to win the approval of Gov. Jerry Brown, who cautioned against spending away the state’s surplus when he introduced his $190 billion budget proposal in January.Given Brown’s openness to expanding Medi-Cal expansions in recent years, not to mention his proclivity for blindly supporting any measure benefitting lawbreaking immigrants, the latest fiscal irresponsibility may win approval.And if he takes a pass, the two Democrats most likely to succeed Brown — Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa – favor excessive social spending and are actively courting illegal immigrant support.
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