Letting Illegal Immigrants Sink Health-Care “Reform”

Mickey Kaus, who voted for Obama and wants universal health-care, wonders why Obama is damaging his credibility and endangering his health-care reform proposals by lying about whether ObamaCare will cover illegal aliens.  He chides Congressional Democrats for trying “to sneak de facto health care for illegals through while showily saying the opposite,” and Obama for offering “carefully-crafted phrases designed to offer false assurance” that illegals will not be covered.

Kaus notes “that illegal immigrants will too get health insurance under the current Democratic proposals. They’re technically not eligible, maybe–but their eligibility probably won’t be verified. And Dems have rejected amendments to require verification. (Illegal immigrants aren’t technically eligible for jobs either, but they get them.) . . .The President has gone on radio twice in recent days to assure voters that the bill wasn’t ‘designed to provide health insurance to illegal immigrants’ . . . When it turns out that these are carefully-crafted phrases designed to offer false assurance about what would actually happen, what will people believe about Obama’s other assurances? As with the ‘death panel’ rebuttals that have failed to calm seniors’ ‘not entirely irrational’ fears of rationing, it’s almost worse to offer sweeping denials that are only 90% accurate than not to offer them at all. . .Liberals went through a similar, politically devastating, process with welfare. Year after year, decade after decade, they would assure Americans that welfare recipients were actually required to work. See, it says so right in the legislation! There’s a ‘work requirement’! The voters never believed this, and took it out on Democrats at the polls. Eventually it became common knowledge, even among the well-informed, that the ‘work requirements’ were riddled with loopholes. Only with Clinton’s 1996 reform did the Democrats put a tourniquet on this wound. Now they’re opening another one.”

(Of course, as Kaus earlier noted, Obama’s stimulus package largely repealed the 1996 welfare reform law, giving states’ new incentives to expand welfare rolls and welfare-dependency).

Many other scholars, commentators, lawyers, and journalists have concluded that the President is lying when he says that ObamaCare will not cover illegal aliens (although they will be exempt from its fines and penalties).

If illegal aliens do sink ObamaCare, it will be no loss, since his health-care proposals are so bad that they are even worse than the status quo.

As I explained earlier, Obama’s health-care proposals won’t give us a national health-care system that works as well as in European countries like France or Switzerland. And ObamaCare will cost more than any other health-care system in the world, while adding more than a trillion dollars to the national debt.

ObamaCare is full of special-interest giveaways and constitutionally-dubious provisions like racial preferences and set-asides, which has led to ObamaCare being criticized by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. (ObamaCare also contains lots of waste and subsidies for politically-correct things like “cultural competency,” while cutting spending on crucial things like anesthesia).

Obama’s credibility is further undermined by his long line of broken promises, such as his pledge to enact a “net spending cut,” which he broke through budgets that will explode the national debt through $9.3 trillion in massively increased deficit spending.

(Countries that refused to adopt stimulus packages modeled on Obama’s costly $800 billion stimulus package have fared better than those that imitated Obama. And the biggest-spending countries have suffered worse in the recession. The stimulus package was a costly failure that substituted welfare for productive investment).

Obama’s own advisors have called into question his claims about how ObamaCare will supposedly let you keep your health coverage while cutting costs.

ObamaCare is all about rationing,” says one of Obama’s own advisers, Martin Feldstein. Feldstein earlier noted that Obama’s health-care plan would harm people with insurance, and massively raise taxes.

Fact-checkers say Obama is lying about health-care. Obama often contradicts himself. In the very same speech, Obama claimed that Medicare is “unsustainable” and “running out of money,” then contradicted himself by claiming that “Medicare is a government program that works really well,” making it a model for national health-care.

Feldstein, a Harvard professor, warns that “For the 85 percent of Americans who already have health insurance, the Obama health plan is bad news. It means higher taxes, less health care and no protection if they lose their current insurance because of unemployment or early retirement.” Obama’s plan would “cost more than $1 trillion,” and raise the top federal “income-tax rate from 35 percent today to more than 45 percent,” he notes.

As a CNN commentary earlier noted, Obama’s plan would take away “5 freedoms,” including the freedom to choose your doctors, the freedom to choose what’s in your plan, the freedom to keep your existing plan, the freedom to be rewarded for healthy living, and the freedom to choose high-deductible coverage.

Earlier, we described how Obama’s health-care plan would destroy many affordable health-care plans, raise taxes on the middle class, and break Obama’s campaign promises, as well as his recent pledge that “if you like your health care plan, you can keep it.”