Health Care Cost Cannot Be Known Without Immigration Reform

Posted on March 11, 2010


We are all in undone and our separate camps over immigration reform and yet we might just all be in agreement on one point: it should have preceded health care legislation. Without knowing who has and who has not got illegal status, it would be impossible to know the ultimate cost of health care reform. Will amnesty be awarded to many to qualify them for health care coverage? Amnesty is as hot an issue as health care for illegals.

One way or another illegal immigrants end  up in our emergency rooms and most of us now know that the cost of it is covered by Mr. and Mrs. American citizen.  It is among the benefits of being an illegal immigrant. It ranks right up there with not having to pay taxes and unimpeded travel back and forth across the Mexican border. That is another tax they will avoid – the visitor tax of $10.00 biannually.

March 7, Cuba announced that it will institute a rule in May that makes it imperative for all visitors and other individuals who do not reside in Cuba to buy health insurance from approved foreign agencies. Diplomats and accredited members of international organizations are exempt.[Business Report]

Why this measure?  Cuba is cash-strapped. They cannot afford to have visitors and others land in their emergency rooms. Cuba has no illegal immigrant problems – just pesky tourists there to exploit. We here in the States have pesky wealthy people to exploit to help pay for the socialization of medicine. But we are as cash strapped as any country in this hemisphere.

This nation will divide more deeply over immigration than any other issue which is no doubt why the President put the cart (health care) ahead of the horse that drags it (immigration). Illegal immigration today is not what it was in our parents’ time and we will be at loggerheads with the Hispanic community whose people are the immigrants in question. [see Some Latinos Want the US Back Not Just Amnesty] After all, it is the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that is headed to Barack Obama’s office to complain bitterly that there are no assurances that  illegal immigrants will be covered.

The United States is moving toward being more heavily integrated with Central and South America by virtue of the people flooding the border daily. Expectations from immigrants are very high.  After years of hearing about all of the opportunities here, they do not want to lose the dream. Neither do its citizens.

At some point some illegals will need to go away empty-handed in order to protect legal citizens who need the jobs and the health care coverage. As the depression deepens, feelings on both sides of this issue will no doubt heat up. We need to handle this area quickly and fairly. This is a priority for which comprehensive health care reform such as we are grappling with now could have waited. As has been said above. A quick fix to tort law and to insurance practices could have carried the day long before now and have brought relief to so many people in debt due to medical costs.

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