The California taxpayers may soon be facing another massive burden if the state’s radical leftwing lawmakers get their way. SB 562, which mandates a massive overhaul of the state’s health insurance market, has passed through committee and is set to hit the Senate floor next week – without solid plans for how California will muster up the funds to pay for it.
The bill, which was introduced by state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), would cost a jaw-dropping $400 billion. Lara has floated rumors that he has come up with a revolutionary funding mechanism that is both sustainable and can cover the massive burden; he just hasn’t filled the rest of us in.
“Republicans in Congress voted to strip healthcare from 23 million people without a hearing or a fiscal analysis,” Lara said in a statement. “We have already held two hearings and had an analysis, and I will be introducing a plan to pay for this program and cover every Californian. With Republicans determined to take away people’s healthcare, we can’t afford to wait.”
SB 562 sailed through the Senate Appropriations committee – which Lara chairs – with a 5-2 vote just days after the committee revealed the first cost assessment placing the cost of the bill at a sum that is higher than the entire state budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, the Sacramento Bee reported.
California’s Republican minority has balked at the Democrats’ rush to appease progressive voters, with Senate Republican Leader Patricia Bates (R-Laguna Niguel) stating: “We’re thinking about it as a concept that we’re going to pass without any detail. I hope at some point rational thinking kicks in and we’re not just driven by this lobbying effort. Good policy doesn’t come out of intimidation.”
Other opponents of the bill have demanded that legislators provide a clear plan for funding the bill before it moves any further.
“Why would you just mindlessly pass that through without more details?” wondered David Wolfe, legislative director for the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. “The lack of transparency here is stunning. It would be interesting to hypothesize, if it wasn’t the chairman’s bill, would it have been held?”