Nine California representatives asked the health and treasury secretaries to reject the state’s application to allow illegal immigrants coverage under the state’s health insurance exchange.
Governor Jerry Brown, a Democrat, signed a law earlier this month requiring the state to apply for a waiver with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that would permit illegal immigrants to enroll on the exchange, called Covered California.
If California is granted such a waiver, it would be the first state granted the ability to offer insurance on its exchange to undocumented immigrants. Under the Affordable Care Act, undocumented immigrants are not eligible to purchase health insurance from states’ exchanges.
“This brazen attempt to circumvent the will of Congress adds insult to injury for the millions of Americans who have already been aggrieved and misled by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA),” a letter to HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, says. “Additionally, California’s waiver request would raise costs to taxpayers and set an improper precedent for other states that could lead to full taxpayer-subsidized healthcare coverage for individuals who are illegally present in the United States.”
The letter was signed by California Republicans Darrell Issa, Tom McClintock, Ken Calvert, Dana Rohrabacher, Duncan Hunter, Doug LaMalfa, Paul Cook, Ed Royce, and Mimi Walters.