House Reform Measure Won’t Limit Exchanges Based on Citizenship
House Democratic leaders have decided to retain in the chamber's health reform bill (HR 3962) language that would not prohibit undocumented immigrants from purchasing health insurance through exchanges, CQ Today reports.
The House decided to retain its language rather than adopt stricter language that more closely mirrors limitations included in the Senate Finance Committee bill (S 1796) (Stern/Wayne, CQ Today, 11/5).
Unidentified members of the House Democratic caucus have pushed to include the stronger prohibitions in recent days, but members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus threatened to withhold support for the House bill if the tighter restrictions were added (Allen, The Hill, 11/5).
In its current form, the House legislation would bar government subsidies for insurance from going to undocumented immigrants and prevent them from enrolling in a public insurance option.
It would not ban their participation in health insurance exchanges that the bill would create.
The Senate Finance Committee bill explicitly would bar undocumented immigrants from the exchanges (CQ Today, 11/5). That language initially was proposed by President Obama (The Hill, 11/5).According to White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, the president as of Thursday continued to support the language in the Senate bill (Hunt, CongressDaily, 11/6). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.