Blue State Advances Bill To Extend State-Funded Health Insurance To Illegal Immigrants

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Robert Schmad Contributor
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The Senate of Virginia advanced a bill out of committee on Thursday night that would extend state-funded health insurance to illegal immigrants.

SB 231, also called the “Cover All Kids” Act, advanced out of the Virginia Senate committee on Finance and Appropriations, according to legislative records. The law, if passed, would “provide state-funded comprehensive health care coverage” to low-income individuals under the age of 19 who would otherwise be eligible for such programs “but for their immigration status.”

It passed out of committee on a near party-line vote, with 10 Democrats and one Republican voting in favor, and four Republicans voting against advancing the bill. (RELATED: California Offers Illegal Immigrants Taxpayer-Funded Health Care)

Republican state Sen. Todd E. Pillion was the sole Republican to support advancing the measure. Pillion did not immediately respond when asked by the Daily Caller News Foundation to explain his vote.

The bill also includes protections to ensure that information collected by the state to give illegal immigrants healthcare would not be used by an immigration enforcement agency unless it presents a valid judicial order, subpoena or warrant.

Additionally, the bill mandates the creation of a task force to reach out to eligible illegal immigrants and encourage them to apply for the state-funded healthcare program through marketing and outreach activities.

“Every child throughout the Commonwealth, regardless of income, immigration status, and background should have access to quality, comprehensive healthcare,” Democratic Virginia state Sen. Ghazala Hashmi, who voted to advance the bill, said.

“We know that a healthy childhood leads to better health, education, and economic outcomes for children and their families.”

Hashmi did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin speaks at a campaign rally for Republican U.S. House nominee, state Sen. Jen Kiggans on October 27, 2022 in Smithfield, Virginia. Kiggans and incumbent U.S. Rep. Elaine Luria (D-VA) are polling in a virtual tie for Virginia's 2nd Congressional District ahead of the November 8 general election. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Republican state Sen. Glen Sturtevant, who opposes the bill, told Fox News Digital that it could “cost Virginia taxpayers more than $100 million just in this decade.”

Virginia wouldn’t be the first blue state to transfer large sums of taxpayer dollars to illegal immigrants.

Washington state doled out over $312 million in cash transfers to illegal immigrants in 2022 as a form of COVID-19 relief. California, meanwhile, made the state’s version of Medicare accessible to illegal immigrants as of Jan. 1.

If passed, the bill would ultimately be subject to Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s veto.

“The Governor will review any legislation that comes to his desk, but Virginia taxpayers should not be stuck with the consequences of Biden’s inability to secure our southern border,” a spokesperson for Gov. Youngkin told the DCNF.

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