Tonight, the House passed by a slim 220-215 margin a health care reform bill (H.R. 3962) that excludes the restrictions necessary to prevent illegal aliens from accessing benefits. This set up a potential conference committee battle since President Obama and the Senate support tighter restrictions.
The House bill would allow illegal aliens to use the new health care "exchange" and would not require verification to keep illegal aliens out of the other parts of the proposed federal health care system.
The Congressional Hispanic Caucus had threatened to vote against the bill if additional verification measures were added. Nydia Velazquez, the chairwoman of the CHC, said "We made it very clear that 20 votes in the Hispanic Caucus will be supportive of the current language in the House version…If the language changes, I guess then you're going to have 20 votes that will change." They have prevailed for the moment.
See this House Republican Study Committee analysis of how illegal aliens can gain access to the proposed health care system under the bill.
Updated: Sun, Nov 8th 2009 @ 12:26am EST