Sunday, July 21, 2024

Obama Criticized by Latino Representative On Health Care Plans


President Obama was criticized by a top Latino ally on Monday for altering his health-care plan in order to garner conservative support. Speaking in Spanish, Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), said: “Those who should be our friends, our allies, are more and more giving Rep. (Joe) Wilson, R-S.C., exactly what he wants to continue with this prejudice against our community.”

Gutierrez made his comments while speaking on a panel regarding immigration reform sponsored by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. He explained that he was angered by the Obama administration’s announcement that it was going to keep undocumented workers from taking part in the health insurance exchange.

The health insurance exchange is a marketplace where individuals and small businesses will be able to purchase insurance at competitive prices. When brought together, this group will have greater bargaining power with the insurance companies. Undocumented workers will be without access to this exchange and employer-provided insurance and will therefore have great difficulty affording insurance. Consequently, an estimated 12 million illegal immigrants will have to rely more than ever on emergency room care, which ends up being paid for by the government and individuals with private insurance.

First, Gutierrez lamented Wilson’s outburst in the House but then moved on to scolding the president for folding to the South Carolina congressmen and his colleagues.

“What is the administration’s answer?” asked Gutierrez. “To give him exactly what he said from this hatred. Because now, the administration has told us that if we’re going to have reform of our health care system … all those that go to the private sector in order to get their health care, that they will verify them. They will verify Social Security; they will verify their status in the United States of America.”

“So, and remember, we’re not talking about government health care, we’re talking about everybody is going to be required to get health care insurance,” said Gutierrez. “And so as we go to this big store, right, where everybody is required. And this exchange, the health care exchange, where if you don’t have health care you are required to go purchase it. When you go and attempt to purchase it, what does the administration say? The administration says, ‘You will have to prove that you are legally in the United States and have a Social Security number and a right to that.'”

“Some immigrants, and let me say it – hundreds of thousands of them — who have businesses, who are prospering, who are paying taxes— even when they wish to buy because it’s going to be a requirement to buy it, this administration has told them don’t buy. You can’t. You can’t buy.”

“I think we need to understand this is not a new debate,” he continued. “This is an old debate. … I believe this is what worries a lot of us.”

When asked about the criticism from Gutierrez, a White House official told ABC News: “The President has been clear since the campaign that he does not intend to for health insurance reform to cover undocumented immigrants. He does believe, however, that Latinos are among those with the most to gain from health insurance reform that provides more stability to those who have health insurance, access to quality coverage for those who don’t, and lowers costs for everyone. We look forward to working with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to make that vision a reality.”

Gutierrez then spoke on the need for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to learn how to more effectively leverage its power. He pointed out the success of the group of conservative Democrats, called the Blue Dogs, and explained that the CHC should study their actions and act more strategically.

“There won’t be true reform in this country until the most vulnerable among us have their rights respected here,” he added.

ABC News


  1. Instead of Pres. Obama giving Rep. Wilson what he wanted, he should be giving the Mexican people what they need, namely, a chance for Mexico to be accepted as the “51st state” (10+ new states) sans racism, so they can be included in the Great American Dream as equal citizens instead of continuing to suffer the de facto apartheid foisted on Mexico by the U.S. back in 1848. The Mexicans aren’t Huns, and it’s time we all learned to accept each others’ existence and work to share the New World in peace. The only thing that has to go is the ever-corrupt fatcat and cartel-controlled Mexican govt.

    Click the url to read my Megamerge Dissolution Solution proposal showing how the Obama admin. can do the right thing starting as early as 2010, the Wilsons of the Congress notwithstanding.

  2. alberto lopez says

    I will not pay with my taxes for illegal immigrants to receive free care whatsoever they should get in line like everyone else.

    Specially corrupt governments and dictators (present and future) should take care of their own and not to have to go to another country to take care of them