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Friday, March 19, 2010

Immigration Proposal Will Blow Out All HCR Cost Estimates

Chuck Schumer and Lindsey Graham have put forth the outlines of an immigration plan, which has been endorsed by Obama as the basis for immigration reform.

While there is no legislative text, as described by Schumer and Graham, the key is that illegal aliens automatically would gain legal status if they followed certain steps:
For the 11 million immigrants already in this country illegally, we would provide a tough but fair path forward. They would be required to admit they broke the law and to pay their debt to society by performing community service and paying fines and back taxes. These people would be required to pass background checks and be proficient in English before going to the back of the line of prospective immigrants to earn the opportunity to work toward lawful permanent residence.
Assuming the eventual legislation followed this path, the key point is that illegal aliens automatically would be turned into legal aliens from the moment they enter the system. They may have to wait for "lawful permanent residence" but they would not be here illegally anymore.

There are tremendous implications of this automatic change in status for the pending health care bill, which appears headed for a vote Sunday.

The Senate health care bill, which is the foundation of Obamacare, treats legal aliens on par with citizens when it comes to the health care exchanges.

The key phrase is "an alien lawfully present in the United States," which bestows upon such person all the benefits of the exchanges as a "qualified individual" (emphasis mine):


If an individual is not, or is not reasonably expected to be for the entire period for which enrollment is sought, a citizen or national of the United States or an alien lawfully present in the United States, the individual shall not be treated as a qualified individual and may not be covered under a qualified health plan in the individual market that is offered through an Exchange. [pg. 161]

This same term, "an alien lawfully present in the United States," is the term used in section 1401 providing tax credits (emphasis mine):
(2) LAWFULLY PRESENT.—For purposes of this section, an individual shall be treated as lawfully present only if the individual is, and is reasonably expected to be for the entire period of enrollment for which the credit under this section is being claimed, a citizen or national of the United States or an alien lawfully present in the United States. [pg. 253]
Similar language applies to the "reduced cost sharing provisions" of section 1402 (pg. 266).

The CBO cost estimates (which themselves are based on falsely rosy assumptions) do not take into account the more than 10 million people who will fully participate in the exchanges and receive subsidies (depending upon income) automatically if the Schumer-Graham proposal became law.

The Schumer-Graham proposal, which is endorsed by Obama, is just another warning sign that the CBO cost estimates are pure fantasy.

Buyer beware.

Related Posts:
CBO Credibility The First Victim Of Obamacare
They Lied! (To Their Own Supporters)
Inconvenient Words In CBO Report

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  1. While the Civil Rights Act got bi-partisan support, it was signed into law by a Democrat president. To this day blacks vote overwhelmingly Democrat, I believe, in large part because of that.

    As with blacks and civil rights legislation, I bet the illegals will develop a loyalty to the Democratic Party. Graham's complicity in this will help give the Democratic Party a permanent majority.

    We may as well just put the hammer and sickle on the flag.

  2. Yup, in terms of major legislation, it is always the president that either gets the credit or the blame. In regards to the Civil Rights Act, Senator Dirksen's support was instrumental to getting the Act passed in the Senate. Nevertheless, because LBJ signed it into law, it is the Democrats that have gotten the credit, despite the fact that the number of Democrats who did not want to see the legislation passed was pretty similar to the Republican number.

    So, if Immigration reform is signed into law by Obama, no one will remember that Senator Graham was instrumental to the passage. All the credit will go to Obama and the Democrats.

  3. Would "lawfully present" include aliens in the U.S. on a visa? If so, will this open the U.S. to having to provide healthcare to everyone with a visa? Also if so, wouldn't foreign businesses teaching people how to travel to the U.S. and game this system immediately spring up? Would foreign governments eager to unload their most expensive patients be eager to provide them a visa and give them a one-way ticket to the U.S.?

    Would anyone with a visa be excluded from Obamacare by the language, "is reasonably expected to be for the entire period of enrollment for which the credit under this section is being claimed"?

  4. I have been blogging about this for months. This is why Obama has tackled legislation in the order he has. He not only knew that handing illegals a path to citizenship would increase health care costs, he knew the issue would bog him down for months before he could get to health care. This issue is almost as divisive as health care itself.I don't know how I can explain it more clearly: when we are talking "illegals" we are talking Mexicans in-the-main. They are mestizos - half native American and 1/2 European. It is their native blood that explains their insistence that we should not even have borders but that in any event, they should be allowed to move freely over it. This is where the clash will have it's heart. Most in this country only see people trying to demand the unreasonable but they will tell you this is not your grandfather's immigration anymore. See my article and references "Some Latinos Want the US Back Not Just Amnesty"

    And search under "immigration" for my other immigration articles. I am weary of blogging about it. I have spoken. I feel like Cassandra.

  5. Why must we grant "amnesty" to so called 11 million illegals? Our population has been sky-rocketing for 25 years, why must we grow at such a fast pace?

    The real number of Mestizo already here and soon to be flooding in, will be closer to 30 million.

    That's the transformation progressive's seek.

  6. Nessus

    You are quite right Nessus - this IS the transformation progressives seek. We are now part of the socialist proletariat worldwide.

    Next, we citizens will be re-evaluated every 5 years to re-establish our citizenry.

  7. You are so perceptive! This is another example of the Cloward-Piven Strategy. Flood the system to the breaking point - until it collapses; then re-structure everything into your "vision" of "good" government. Amnesty for illegals is the next logical step in the progression, all part of the Strategy.

    The only thing "transparent" about this administration is the methods they use to achieve their goals. It would be funny, if it wasn't dead serious. It is our liberty that is at stake!!

    How to stop them? Will November be too late?!

  8. It's odd how none of the opponents of either the UHC plan or amnesty have picked up on my highly effective, ideology-neutral technique that could be used to block both. I've only been promoting it for over three years in post after post on my site and comment after comment on other sites, but the supposed opponents just keep on doing things that have little impact. Odd.