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HHS Secretary Refuses To Explain Why ‘Hardworking Americans’ Should Pay For Illegals’ Healthcare

HHS Sec. Xavier Becerra refuses to answer why Americans should foot the bill for illegal immigrants' healthcare
Image CreditScreenshot / Senate Finance Committee

Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra refused to explain Thursday why “hardworking Americans should pay” for foreign lawbreakers’ healthcare when grilled by Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso.

Barrasso detailed how cities are being overwhelmed by illegal immigrants draining their resources and putting a massive strain on health funds and infrastructure, noting Denver Health saw more than 20,000 illegally present foreigners seeking medical care in 2023. Denver Health is “at a critical, critical point” as costs pile up, CEO Donna Lynne said, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.

“Can you please explain why it is the responsibility of hard-working American taxpayers to foot the bill for all of this care for people, nine million now, from all across the world who have flooded their way into the United States?”

“What I could tell you is that we have extended the resources and authorities that we have at HHS to try to be there to help any healthcare facility when there is a way that we can go in to be supportive. I don’t know of a particular case that you might want to mention, but I know that we are prepared to be supportive of any facility where the authorities that you have given us allow us to go in and support,” Becerra responded.

“The federal government doesn’t pay for the health care of every legal U.S. citizen,” Barrasso shot back. “It seems like it’s in the position now of having to do it all for these illegal immigrants. Why should the American citizen be forced to pay for illegal migrants to receive this same care for free? Because that’s what’s happening.”

Becerra claimed he does not “know how particular states operate their healthcare systems” but that when Medicare or Medicaid approaches HHS “we’re ready to try to be responsible.”

“You are aware that when a hospital is inundated with people who are not paying, they have to shift the cost to the people that are paying?” Barrasso asked. “And that’s what’s happening right now, all across the country and specifically at so many of the sanctuary cities.”

Cook County Health in Chicago is among the many hospitals across the nation overrun by foreign trespassers who don’t pay for their care. Cook County Health has seen approximately 81,000 illegal immigrant visits since 2022, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.

“We see a lot of patients at Cook County Health, so just adding in all those people at one time is a bit of a stress,” Chief Medical Officer Claudia Fegan told Becker’s Hospital Review.

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