Senate Democrats blocked Wednesday the passage of a police reform bill led by Senator Tim Scott, R-SC, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had a few things to say about the move to the opposing party before the Senate on Thursday. In his remarks, McConnell singled out Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, for ignoring Scott while “trashing” the bill he worked tirelessly to amend for the Democrats’ requests.
“I could not help but notice that in the Democratic Leader’s lengthy remarks yesterday morning, he did not once address or acknowledge the junior Senator for South Carolina as the author of the JUSTICE Act,” McConnell said. “Not one time did the Democratic Leader address Senator Tim Scott as the author of the legislation he was trashing.”
“I cannot see why the Democratic Leader talks right past Senator Scott as if he were not leading this discussion, as if he were barely here. All I can say is that it was jarring to witness, especially in a national moment like this.”
McConnell added that Scott had been working diligently to push police reform bills for years, saying “Senator Scott led the working group. He wrote the bill. He has been studying, and working on, and living these issues since long before the Democratic Leader came rushing to the microphones on this subject a few weeks ago.
“I can certainly take all the angry comments my colleague from New York wants to throw my way. I don’t mind,” he said. “But if he’d like to learn something about the substance of this issue, he might want to stop acting like Senator Scott hardly exists and learn from the expert who wrote the bill.”
Ahead of today's vote, I offered to include an amendment for every concern that was presented. They didn’t stick around for that meeting. This vote is an opportunity to say yes to those folks who are waiting for leadership to stand and be counted. #JUSTICEAct pic.twitter.com/N56EwrSx0V
— Tim Scott (@SenatorTimScott) June 24, 2020
Sen. Scott recognized the issues Senate Democrats had with the bill and later offered an amendment to include every one of their concerns. “We received a letter from Senator Schumer, saying there were five things about the Justice Act that did not meet their principles. My response was a simple one, let’s have five amendments on those things,” Scott said Wednesday.
Further, Scott said he met with a number of Democratic Senators who said there were additional issues outside of the five presented by Sen. Schumer. “So, I said, let’s include an amendment for every single issue you have. They did not stick around for that meeting,” he added.
“I respect people that I disagree with, they have the right to disagree. My pastor tells me I have the right to be wrong, which means I’m not right all the time. But, on this one, if you don’t think we’re right, make it better, don’t walk away, vote for the motion to proceed so that we have an opportunity to deal with this very real threat to the America that is civil, that is balanced, this is an opportunity to say yes, not to us, to those folks who are waiting for leadership to stand and be counted.”
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CA to provide all low-income illegal immigrants health care at a cost of ‘$2.7 billion a year’
On Thursday, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a $307.9 billion operating budget “that pledges to make all low-income adults eligible for the state’s Medicaid program by 2024 regardless of their immigration status” reports the Associated Press.
The guarantee of free health care for low-income immigrants here illegally, is a “move that will provide coverage for an additional 764,000 people at an eventual cost of about $2.7 billion a year” adds the AP.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a health care nonprofit, people living in the country illegally in 2020 accounted for roughly 7% of the population nationwide, or about 22.1 million people. The border crisis and number of migrants entering the United States illegally has skyrocketed to historic levels since 2020 when President Joe Biden took office.
Medicaid nationwide is the current combination of federal and state governments assisting Americans and low-income adults and children to receive free health care, but the federal government does not cover those living here illegally.
“Some states, including California, have used their own tax dollars to cover a portion of health care expenses for some low-income immigrants” reports the AP. “Now, California wants to be the first to do that for everyone.”
“This will represent the biggest expansion of coverage in the nation since the start of the Affordable Care Act in 2014,” said Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access California, a statewide consumer health care advocacy group. “In California we recognize (that) everybody benefits when everyone is covered.”
While 92% of Californians currently have some form of health insurance, “that will change once this budget is fully implemented, as adults living in the country illegally make up one of the largest groups of people without insurance in the state” the AP concludes.
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