Senator Arlen Specter’s town hall meetings on healthcare may have been disrupted like those of many other Democrats, but he has stressed his support for the reform is not unconditional.
In fact, the Pennsylvania Democrat has confirmed his opposition to any healthcare legislation that would cover illegal aliens, a surprising statement given his long-standing support for an amnesty and his authorship of the 2006 amnesty bill that was ultimately rejected.
The senator’s stance was applauded by the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), whose president Dan Stein reminded the American people that illegal immigrants and their children "account for as much as one-third of the medically uninsured [and] including them under the plan is unwarranted and would add billions to the price tag."
He went on to say that "We hope that others in Congress join Senator Specter in opposing provisions that would require American taxpayers to provide the full spectrum of health benefits to illegal aliens."
The organization worries that proposed legislation, which is due to be debated in Congress in the fall, could make illegal immigrants eligible for government-provided insurance or "affordability credits" to buy private insurance.
Earlier this summer, Specter stunned the Republican Party by crossing the aisle. His explanation for the move – saying he was doing it because he did not believe he stood a chance against a potential rival in next year’s primary elections in Pennsylvania – also raised some eyebrows.