In the now famous exchange at Barack Obama's health care speech to column, Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC) yelled out "You Lie!" immediately after Mr. Obama said the following.
There are also those who claim that our reform efforts would insure illegal immigrants. This, too, is false. The reforms -- the reforms I'm proposing would not apply to those who are here illegally.
Now, Mr. Wilson could have been referring to other of Mr. Obama's assertions. But, for the sake of today's piece, let's assume the "You Lie!" was in response to this. If so, the Senate Finance Committee has moved today to make that assertion a lie.
Senate Finance Committee Democrats rejected a proposed a requirement that immigrants prove their identity with photo identification when signing up for health insurance or tax credits under healthcare reform.
Finance Committee ranking member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said that current law and the healthcare bill under consideration are too lax and leave the door open to illegal immigrants defrauding the government using false or stolen identities to obtain benefits.
Grassley's amendment was beaten back 10-13 on a party-line vote.
The bill does set some limits on accessing the system for (illegal) immigrants. But there's little to no verification, and I suspect no enforcement.
The bill, authored by committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), would require applicants to verify their names, places of birth and Social Security numbers. In addition, legal immigrants would have to wait five years, as under current law, after obtaining citizenship or legal residency to access federal healthcare benefits or purchase insurance through the exchange created by the legislation.
That's okay. We can just give everyone legal status anyway.