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Albany County Enrolling Convicts in Obamacare

Citing tax savings, Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple (D) has been encouraging prisoners to enroll in Obamacare claiming it will save money for county taxpayers.

Via the Free Beacon (h/t Weasel Zippers):

Obamacare enrollment numbers have fallen so short of the Obama administration’s anticipated goal that the government has begun enrolling America’s most upstanding citizens–our incarcerated population–and picking up the tab for it, too.

Albany County, New York Sheriff Craig Apple has pushed hard for prisoners to enroll in Obamacare. He says it’s a win-win situation for inmates and taxpayers. Apple told WRGB that taxpayers will only be forced to pay once for inmates’ medical bills- through their federal taxes, not in addition to their county taxes. Sheriff Apple said that there are around 400 inmates eligible to enroll in Obamacare.

WRGB interviewed Trevaughn Banks, an inmate set to be released from the Albany correctional facility next month. After his release, he will be an official Obamacare enrollee.

“I don’t want to have to [pay] out of pocket every time I need to take a trip to the doctor or emergency room,” Banks explained.

He said that prisoners deserve healthcare.

Banks goes on to say that opposition to inmates getting Obamacare is “unfair.”

Apple may have fallen from the tree, believing money grows on them.  If Obamacare is funded through federal tax money, then federal taxes will have to cover the all of the other counties that are exploiting this loophole.  If the burden is shifted from county to federal, county residents will still have to fund this shell game through increased federal taxes.  The hitch is that if only a handful of counties exploit this loophole, then the burden will be spread throughout the federal tax base.  And isn’t spreading the tax burden to others what the Democrat party is all about?

Currently, six states have jail officials pushing to get inmates on the Affordable Care Act rolls.  Doing so also allows the administration to artificially inflate enrollment numbers as they are added once they are booked and fingerprinted.

One Democrat Senator argued that enrolling inmates is a scheme to avoid responsibility.

One former Democratic U.S. senator who debated the Affordable Care Act told Bloomberg that he and his colleagues never intended for Obamacare to cover incarcerated people who are the responsibility of local governments.

‘It starts to look a little like a scheme by the states and local jurisdictions to avoid responsibilities that are really theirs,’ he said.

Republicans have also voiced opposition to the scheme:

‘We just found out that Obamacare is going to cost $2 trillion over 10 years,’ an aide to a Republican senator, who requested anonymity, told MailOnline on Thursday. ‘Now we’re going to have local governments picking our pockets to pay for their jail inmates? What a disgrace.’

‘It makes you wonder,’ the Senate staffer said, ‘when the president gets excited about enrolling a few million people: How many of them are criminals?’

Prisoners are really starting to rack up the benefits in New York these days.  Aside from signing up for Obamacare on the taxpayer dime, Governor Cuomo is pushing a plan to have taxpayers fund their education, not to mention taxpayer funded Medicaid for ex-cons.

Rusty Weiss

Rusty Weiss is a freelance journalist focusing on the conservative movement and its political agenda. He has been writing conservatively charged articles for several years in the upstate New York area, and his writings have appeared in the Daily Caller, American Thinker,, Big Government, the Times Union, and the Troy Record. He is also Editor of one of the top conservative blogs of 2012, the Mental Recession.

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