California Gov. Gavin Newsom spoke at California State University Long Beach in Long Beach (California), on March 3 . (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times
SACRAMENTO–California is now the only state in the U.S. to offer free healthcare to all low-income illegal immigrants after Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a $307.9 billion budget June 30.
The allocation will give an estimated 764,000 people free healthcare coverage for $2.7 billion annually beginning 2024 under the budget provision’s expanding of the state’s Medi-Cal coverage.
” This is how being pro-life actually looks like,” Newsom posted on Twitter Thursday.
Currently, the federal and state governments offer free healthcare for low-income citizens through Medicaid. However, it does not include illegal immigrants. California will be the first state that offers free healthcare to all citizens, thanks to Newsom’s proposal.
An estimated 92 percent of Californians have some form of healthcare, but that will change once the budget is in full swing and illegal immigrants–who make up the largest group of people in the state without healthcare–receive it under the expansion.
Various reports give different estimations of how many illegal immigrants live in the state, but according to Pew Research Center, there were roughly 2.2 million recorded in 2016. These immigrants, despite not being legal citizens, make up approximately 7 percent of state workers according to the 2020 report from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Proponents and advocates of universal healthcare hail immigrant advocates. However, critics fear that the free provision of healthcare may encourage illegal crossings at South border. This is at a time where deaths are rising.
Jon Coupal is the president of Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. He told the Associated Press that the growth of Medi-Cal was “a magnet” for people who have not been legally allowed to enter the country .”
” I think most of us are sympathetic to immigrant communities, but we wish we could have better control over who enters this country and this state,” said he.
Jamie, a California-based journalist covering Los Angeles issues and state policy for The Epoch Times. She enjoys thrillers and nonfiction, reading, writing poetry, Christian Theology and going to the beach. Jamie can be found with a cup o’ tea on her desk writing about breaking news.