Conservatives on Capitol Hill are furious over a decision by Republican leaders to remove a provision from the new healthcare reform bill that would have prohibited illegal immigrants from receiving federal healthcare insurance coverage.
According to Reuters, the bill was modified on Tuesday to remove a provision that would have allowed the Treasury Department to access data at the Department of Homeland Security to make sure that healthcare tax credits are only going to U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents, not to illegal immigrants.
But, Reuters reports Senate Parliamentarian felt the Senate Finance Committee, which handles tax credits under the bill, does not have purview over the Department of Homeland Security.
Despite the importance for Republicans and President Donald Trump to quickly move forward with a pressing healthcare issue, some Republican leaders, like Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.), are not fans of the new provision and are essentially slowing down the reform process by striking down new provisions.
“I am concerned that the bill lacks sufficient safeguards for verifying whether or not an individual applying for health care tax credits is lawfully in this country and eligible to receive them,” said Barletta.
Reuters reports this provision on immigration was a key part of Trump’s American Health Care Act, the new bill which would take over Obamacare. Other Republicans are dubbing the new bill “Obamacare Lite” because it is barely repealing former President Barack Obama’s healthcare law.
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