Saturday, July 25, 2009

Illegal Immigration: Amesty and Obama's Health Care Plan

I bet most of you never heard of the other Democrat Senator from New York, Chuck Schumer. Well, I think you might want to remember the name since I expect Senator Schumer will be making the talk show circuit in the upcoming months. Senator Schumer recently said the thought our borders were secure enough for “strong, fair, practical, and effective immigration reform this year”. Translation: illegal immigration is stable enough to discuss amnesty for the millions of illegal immigrants currently in this country. Not on the table for discussion will be removal of the criminal element which slips across the border along side those looking for jobs; strong border protection; or requiring a working knowledge of English by all immigrants. Click on the following link entitled “Schumer: Borders Are Now Safe Enough for Immigration Reform” at CBS News:

What do you think about Obama’s Health Care Plan? Yeah, me either. In fact, even members of his own party seemed to pan whole sections of it. My biggest problem is the cost. How can the average middle class American family and small business owner expect to the way for the poor (who need it the most), the rich (who need it the least), and themselves? As it is, we’re already tapped out paying for the Wall Street bailouts, executive perks, increased water, sewer, garbage, electric, and gas bills (not to mention the new energy taxes which is suppose make us less dependent on foreign oil. I thought we had an Energy Department created by in the ‘70’s by President Jimmy Carter to handle that problem. What’s up with that? By the way, don’t we have like a gazillion gallons of untapped oil in Alaska and off Florida’s Gulf Coast? And the reason we’re not drilling there and paying out the nose at the pump is what again?).

Speaking about Obama’s Health Care Plan, what do you think about the portion where Middle America gets to pay for the health care of illegal immigrants? Oh, you didn’t hear about that part? I guess it was an oversight by nearly every media outlet out there. Well, did carry the article. Click on this link to read more, and then write, call, and email your representatives in Washington and let them know what you think:

Along the same lines, the good folks at FAIR sent me their recent news release regarding Obama’s Health Care package which would allow illegal aliens to receive taxpayer based health coverage. Here’s the article:

Illegal Aliens One Step Closer to Getting Health Benefits: Ways and Means Committee Democrats Reject Amendment Designed to Limit Eligibility

(Washington, D.C.) As estimates of the costs of President Obama’s national health care overhaul soar into the trillions of dollars, the powerful House Ways & Means Committee rejected an amendment last Friday that would have limited the taxpayers’ liability by ensuring that illegal aliens would not qualify for the bill’s health care benefits. In a straight party line vote, the committee’s 26 Democrats rejected an amendment offered by Rep. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) to the America’s Affordable Health Care Choices Act, H.R. 3200.

The Heller amendment would have required the federal government to use the database set up by the federal government for states to determine eligibility for welfare benefits to also ensure that illegal aliens do not enroll in the government-run public health insurance plan. It would also have barred illegal aliens from qualifying for tax credits to subsidize the purchase of private health insurance coverage.

The defeated Heller amendment would have required applicants for government provided or subsidized health care to demonstrate eligibility through the Income and Eligibility Verification System (IEVS) and the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) systems. Similarly, people seeking affordability credits from the government to subsidize the purchase of private insurance would also need to verify their eligibility through IEVS and SAVE. These provisions would have effectively barred illegal aliens from receiving taxpayer funded health care benefits.

“At a time when the federal government is running trillion dollar deficits, and the projected costs of the proposed health care overhaul seem to grow with each passing day, the committee that writes our tax laws wants Americans to pay for the health care costs of illegal aliens,” stated Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). “Given the opportunity to close loopholes that would cost the public billions of dollars each year, Democrats on the committee unanimously rejected an amendment that would bar illegal aliens from a national health care program.”

The vote by Ways and Means Democrats came the same week that a Zogby International poll found that 58 percent of Americans believe that excluding illegal aliens from national health coverage is an “excellent” or “very good” proposal for curbing costs. Only 20 percent said barring illegal aliens from coverage was a “poor” idea. The committee vote also occurred the same week that Massachusetts announced that it was cutting state subsidized health benefits to legal immigrants, as costs had spiraled beyond the state’s ability to pay.

“Ironically, immigration – particularly illegal immigration – has been one of the driving forces behind the growing number of medically uninsured,” Stein noted. “According to the Census Bureau, some 10 million noncitizens lack health coverage – a figure that does not include their U.S.-citizen children who are also uninsured.

“Not only do congressional Democrats and the administration want to ignore the relationship between mass illegal immigration and the growing number of uninsured, they refuse to place any caps on how much American taxpayers should have to pay to provide health benefits to illegal aliens. When it comes to satisfying the demands of the illegal alien lobby, the administration and congressional leaders will spare no expense,” concluded Stein.

The 26 members of the House Ways & Means Committee opposing the amendment barring illegal aliens from coverage under the America’s Affordable Health Care Choices Act are:

Xavier Becerra (Calif.), Shelley Berkley (Nev.), Earl Blumenauer (Ore.), Joe Crowley (N.Y.), Artur Davis (Ala.), Danny Davis (Ill.), Lloyd Doggett (Texas), Bob Etheridge (N.C.), Brian Higgins (N.Y.), Ron Kind (Wis.), John Larson (Conn.), Sander Levin (Mich.), John Lewis (Ga.), Jim McDermott (Wash.), Kendrick Meek (Fla.), Richard Neal (Mass.), Bill Pascrell (N.J.), Earl Pomeroy (N.D.), Chairman Charlie Rangel (N.Y.), Linda Sanchez (Calif.), Allyson Schwartz (Pa.), Pete Stark (Calif.), John Tanner (Tenn.), Mike Thompson (Calif.), Chris Van Hollen (Md.), and John Yarmuth (Ky.).

About FAIR
Founded in 1979, FAIR is the country’s largest immigration reform group. With over 250,000 members nationwide, FAIR fights for immigration policies that serve national interests, not special interests. FAIR believes that immigration reform must enhance national security, improve the economy, protect jobs, preserve our environment, and establish a rule of law that is recognized and enforced.

It’s always a delight for me to get a post from Moderate Man, and this is no exception. Here’s what is on Moderate Man’s mind. Drop him a line in care of AO and let him know what you think!

Merger Without Any Reductions In Services?

When the City of Louisville and Jefferson County Governments merged into the Louisville Metro Government on Jan. 6th, 2003, the taxpayers were promised that no reductions in services would occur. Mayor Abramson said in September 2003, his chief concern was to maintain or improve city services without increasing costs. Merger was an incomplete change in the form of our government. We were left with two different taxing districts in Jefferson County. The Urban Service District (old City of Louisville boundary) and the Non Urban Service District (outside the old City of Louisville boundary). Not to mention 83 incorporated small cities inside Louisville Metro who sat out merger, along with their non unified fire departments. This also meant those in the Urban Service District paid considerable more taxes for additional city services, while those outside the district did not. Those in the Urban Service District were to receive, at the time merger was enacted, the following services: Police and fire protection, garbage pickup twice a week, junk pickup four times a year, street sweeping four times a year.

Today what the residents of the Urban Service District receive is: garbage pickup once a week, junk pickup three times a year and maybe even less next year, street sweeping twice a year (but in my neighborhood, I haven’t seen it once this year), police beat patrols have been cut along with the Southfields training facility being sold, plus Fairdale and the old 3rd District Police substations moved, and there’s a net loss in fire stations. Yes, other items have been reduced or cut, like library hours, street paving, etc. Merger was promoted with the understanding that governments duplicate positions would be eliminated either by layoffs, attrition or transfers, to promote an efficient streamlined government. Today, there are 1600 less job positions eliminated since merger of both governments. That promise has been kept. There are less city employees to run the newly merged city. But if your phone call doesn’t get answered quickly, maybe it was because the receptionist who used to do it was laid off. Or it may take two weeks to patch that pothole, as there aren’t as many Public Works employees. Or the extra money spent pre merger on police overtime, has vanished for certain areas of the town. Police helicopter was sold. Swimming pools were eliminated and park maintenance is being put off. Otter Creek Park was closed.

The Louisville Metro Mayor recently visited Charlestown, West Virginia to promote his “success” with merger. Some other United States communities considering merger are: Albuquerque NM, Aurora CO, Birmingham AL, Buffalo NY, Charlestown SC, Des Moines IA, Durham NC, Evansville IN, El Paso TX, Fairbanks AK, Fort Wayne IN, Frankfort KY, Gainesville FL, Little Rock AR, Macon GA, Memphis TN, Fayetteville TN, Montgomery AL, Orlando FL, Pensacola FL, Pittsburg PA, Portland OR, Roanoke VA, Sioux Falls SD, Tallahassee FL, Tampa FL, Toledo OH, Topeka KS, Wilmington NC. These communities should consider if they can really live with a downsized city budget, fewer employees, and reduced city services. Louisville Metro Government is learning how and its citizens will have to also. It’s not pleasant, especially if a city’s leader focuses the merger savings on downtown development and capitol projects.

Moderate Man

Poll Results

Our last poll asked you about the Obama’s lack of attention to the illegal immigration issue, which has either been moved to the back burner, or taken completely off the stove, was justified. 33% of said you didn’t think illegal immigration was a serious issue any longer. However, 66% of you couldn’t disagree more! And the remaining 1% wasn’t sure how important the issue still is. Illegal immigration affects foreign policy, national security, federal, state, and local economics (jobs, housing, crime, healthcare, education, and taxes) in terms of costs. So one percenters, I’d say it’s an important issue wouldn’t you?

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