California lawmakers just passed a bill that would allow the state to attain a federal waiver that would pave the way for illegal immigrants to purchase health insurance on the state’s Obamacare exchange.
The state senate overwhelmingly approved the measure which will now head to Governor Jerry Brown’s desk.
A bill that could let California extend health insurance under the Affordable Care Act to immigrants who are in the country illegally is on its way to the governor’s office.
On Thursday, the state Senate voted 27-8 to approve SB 10, a bill that directs the state to seek a federal waiver to an existing rule barring unauthorized immigrants from purchasing coverage through Covered California, the state health exchange.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), cleared the state Assembly earlier this week.
If Gov. Jerry Brown signs the bill, it clears the way for Covered California officials to apply for the waiver. The next step is up to the federal government, which would decide whether to grant it.
Lara boasted, “California will officially become the first state to open up Covered California, or our version of the Affordable Care Act, to undocumented immigrants.”
Estimates indicate nearly 50,000 illegal immigrants could purchase an Obamacare plan.
Lara also authored a state law that allows low-income children under age 19 who are in the country illegally to obtain full medical coverage under Medi-Cal, California’s Medicaid program.
In September of 2009, President Obama denounced “those who claim that our reform effort will insure illegal immigrants.”
He said, “the reforms I’m proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally.”
To which Rep. [score]Joe Wilson[/score] (R-SC) famously shouted, “You lie!”
Perhaps instead of admonishing Wilson, his colleagues in the senate should have praised him for warning about what was coming.
Hot Air reports that should governor Brown sign the bill, the federal government will have roughly eight months to approve or disapprove the change.
Which side do you think the Obama administration will fall on?