Roe Urges House Leadership to Close Loopholes that Would Allow Illegal Immigrants to Receive Benefits Under H.R. 3200

Congressional Documents and Publications
October 2, 2009

Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN) News Release

Washington, D.C. - Today, Congressman Dr. Phil Roe (TN-1) sent the following letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, reiterating his request that the U.S. House of Representatives adopt language that would close loopholes that could allow illegal immigrants to receive benefits under H.R. 3200:

Following up on a letter I signed with 54 of my colleagues on September 16, 2009, urging the House to adopt language that would close loopholes that could allow illegal immigrants to receive benefits under H.R. 3200, I am writing to reiterate my call in light of a news story that appeared today in the Washington Times - which I have included. According to the article, some Members in the House are pushing to expand these loopholes to allow all legal immigrants and illegal immigrants access and benefits under this system. There is no question that there are many different opinions on what to do with the 13 million individuals living here illegally. I personally believe they should have to follow the law and go home to apply for citizenship like anyone else seeking to come to our country.

Regardless of your view, however, it would be a disaster to our health care and immigration systems to grant health benefits to illegal immigrants and extend taxpayer-funded support to other immigrants regardless of their tenure in this country. Providing benefits to illegal immigrants not only encourages more illegal immigration, but would water down the future potential effects of any solution on immigration. If some House liberals had their way to let all those here illegally stay and gain citizenship, surely many illegal immigrants would be less likely to register if they were already receiving free aid.

These proposals will also add considerable cost to taxpayers who will be paying to subsidize this expanded health care initiative for immigrants. Madame Speaker, at a time when we are trying to find ways to lessen the cost of health care for American families, this proposal by House liberals would run counter to that objective.

I strongly urge you to act swiftly and decisively to close these loopholes and reject these efforts to broaden them. I hope that we can work to find common sense solutions that will expand coverage to American families while lowering costs. ... 29&start=4