California Gov. Gavin Newsom just signed into law a bill that will extend free healthcare coverage to illegal immigrants 0-25 years old (the coverage for minors had been previously passed).
On Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law State Bill 104, which now extends health care benefits to illegal immigrants between the ages of 19-25, in addition to the law that already had guaranteed coverage to illegal immigrants under the age of 19.
The Hill noted, “The bill, introduced earlier this year, is estimated to cover about 90,000 low-income residents overall and comes with a roughly $98 million price tag.”
This comes as California’s financial future gets even bleaker. While some are claiming a recent single year surplus means everything is all good, that ignores the unfunded liabilities and the fact that they have almost four times as much debt as cash on hand (and states can’t just print more money to cover shortfalls).
In fact, things are so bad that of the $5T in unfunded state and local liabilities in the United States, a full $1T of it resides in California, which only makes up 12% of the actual population in the country. California’s debt-to-GDP ratio is also approaching that of several eurozone countries that experienced economic collapses.
Worth noting is that cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco are dealing with an explosion of homelessness right now, many of whom are mentally ill or drug-addled. Instead of spending the proper resources to try to handle that issue, California is using its already finite, over-strapped resources to give free healthcare to illegal immigrants. Meanwhile, crime has spiked and feces litter the streets as homeless encampments spring up everywhere.
Keep in mind, there are plenty of poor Americans in the state not getting such coverage. It’s actually gotten to the point in California that it could be preferable to be in the country illegally.
Even past the financial considerations, giving free healthcare to illegal immigrants only incentivizes more illegal immigration. That means more money for the cartels, more women raped on the journey, more sick and dead children, and further strain on an already resource-starved Border Patrol. This also means that the “price-tag” for this program will balloon as more and more people show up, creating yet more liabilities for California they can’t pay.
It’s completely irresponsible and ignores all the unintended consequences that are ultimately produced by such a move. That’s a trademark of progressivism though. As long as it feels good, it’s worth doing. Who cares if it actually makes the situation worse, right?
As a moral imperative, I’d love to give everybody on this planet free healthcare. But I recognize that’s not only impossible, trying to do so could cause far more harm than good if it ends up bankrupting everyone in the end.
I’ll end by mentioning the other reason none of this is sustainable. Because of California’s ridiculous financial decisions and over-regulation, which has lead to high taxes and housing shortages, they are experiencing massive emigration to other states. Their tax base shrank to the tune of over 1M people between 2007-2016. Adding more and more debt as you continue to lose tax payers is a recipe for disaster.
But Gavin Newsom got to smile for the cameras and that’s what’s really important here.
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