With a taxpayer-financed health care public option proposal all but on life support in the Congress, opponents are now focusing on other no less unpopular aspects of the pending legislation such as coverage available for millions of illegal aliens in the U.S. Adding to the angst, the Labor Day holiday weekend saw heightened alien traffic across the Southwest in general and in Arizona in particular. You would have thought somebody had yelled, “Amnesty!”
Agents assigned to the Yuma Sector of the U.S. Border Patrol apprehended 19 illegal aliens and seized seven vehicles along western stretches of Interstate 40 in the Kingman area.
Highways like I-40 are direct connections between Phoenix, Los Angeles, and Las Vegas, all transportation hubs to the interior of the United States and are well known destinations for illegal immigration and narcotics traffickers. This year alone, the same agents have arrested 1,574 illegals and seized more than 200 cars, trucks, and vans.
A weekend sweep of a swap meet in Phoenix by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department netted 63 arrests, including 24 suspects shown to be in the country illegally. Many of the vendors, themselves, were also charged with being here unlawfully. Deputies were acting on a tip that hundreds of thousands of dollars in counterfeit DVD movies and CD’s were being sold at the meet, set up a short distance down the road from Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s famed desert tent city jail.
In the meantime, another sixteen suspected illegal aliens were arrested by Department of Public Safety troopers after a 100-mph pursuit of a van along Interstate 10 just southeast of Phoenix. Officers said during the chase, the vehicle’s occupants began throwing articles of clothing from the van before the driver attempted to ram a patrol car and instead crashed into a building. He is charged with human smuggling.
As thousands of people continue to stream over the southern border it is understandable then that many Americans are expressing outrage that a proposed congressional overhaul of U.S. health care would extend coverage rights to those who have no lawful presence here in the first place. And as if to punish further, Obamacare (as it is being called) there are provisions pending in this legislation right now that would take away untold hundreds of millions of dollars from the federal Medicare program into which older workers paid a big part of their wages while employed and fines up to $3800 for families who fail to obtain medical insurance after any reworked health care package goes into effect.
The President has been on television seemingly every day lashing out at “pure misinformation” that ObamaCare will be used to cover illegal immigrants but curiously in no way refutes the claim. He does cling to the declaration that the legislation does not specifically offer such coverage directly. However, facts are a rather stubborn commodity.
In HR 3200, Section 246 (page 143) there is no specific requirement that any person prove his citizenship in order to obtain affordability credits meaning that illegal aliens could obtain coverage. Furthermore, Section 152 (pages 50-51, 143) clearly provides the potential for inclusion of illegals because it would be subject to interpretation of “personal characteristics” which would include legal status when such “personal characteristics” and other issues “extraneous to the provision of high quality health care or related services” cannot be used for denial.
If that’s not enough to rub critics the wrong way consider that HR 3200 requires that if one family member is covered, all members of that family will be covered (page 133), another loophole to give taxpayer-subsidized health care to illegal aliens. If a child of illegal aliens is born in the United States, then the entire family becomes eligible for coverage.
So, now as the President relaunches his health care reform initiative with polls showing a majority of Americans skeptical of the details, look for refocused attention on provisions which would embrace coverage for illegal aliens and their families. Surely, somebody is going to wonder out loud why Democrats voted down Representative Nathan Deal’s (R-GA) amendment that would have specifically prohibited Obamacare from covering illegals. If all this is “pure misinformation” would there have been any reason to reject Deal’s amendment outright?
Of course, to the President and members of Congress the uproar over proposed Health Care Reform is of little consequence since theirs is a policy of self-exemption.
Contrast that for a moment with the selfless effort by a local motorcycle club whose members spent their Labor Day weekend trying to raise money to help out the family of slain Border Patrol Agent Robert Rosas. The 30 year old Rosas was shot eight times July 23rd while responding to suspicious activity in a remote area of the U.S. Mexico border known for human and drug smuggling. His killer fled back into Mexico and remains at large.