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Capitol Correspondence - 09.23.19

Senate Moves to Halt Changes to the Public Charge Rule

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As we have shared previously, ANCOR opposes the most recent changes to the public charge rule because of its potential effect on individuals with disabilities and their families.

Here’s the latest update on the rule from Politico Pulse:

FIRST IN PULSE: HIRONO, SENATE DEMOCRATS SEEK TO STOP “PUBLIC CHARGE” — Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) and 26 other Democrats are introducing legislation this morning intended to halt the Trump administration’s controversial changes to how legal immigrants get green cards.

Democrats’ bill would block the use of federal funds and resources to administer and implement the new rule, which calls for immigration officials to deny green cards to legal immigrants if they use public benefits. Nearly 100 House members, including House Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), have cosponsored companion legislation to block the rule, but it’s a likely non-starter in the GOP-controlled Senate.

— Health experts have warned the public charge rule will lead to worse public health as immigrant families opt out of government programs like Medicaid, worried that it would put their potential green cards at risk. One in seven adults in immigrant families already reported that they or their families didn’t participate in government programs last year — even before the rule took effect — out of fear of risking their status.”

Additional resource: members wanting to learn more about this issue might be interested in this report by the Robert Johnson Wood Foundation.