Vote Explanation for H.R. 2581 — Verify First Act

The Verify First Act amends the American Health Care Act — Trumpcare — to require applicants for the bill’s tax credits to provide a Social Security Number (SSN). The bill also requires the Social Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security to verify the SSN before applicants can receive tax credits.

This bill is a solution in search of a problem. There is no concrete evidence to show that the current process under the Affordable Care Act isn’t working to ensure that only those who qualify for premium tax credits actually receive them. There is also no evidence that undocumented immigrants are fraudulently enrolling in Marketplace plans or receiving premium tax credits. Enrolling in a federal plan like this would be a good way for undocumented immigrants to increase their chances of getting deported.

The bill fails to recognize that many individuals who are eligible for tax credits may not have SSN’s available when they apply for coverage. Ultimately, for someone who is ill, delayed care could mean the inability to access timely life-saving treatment.

I voted against H.R. 2581, which would make Trumpcare worse by creating additional barriers to access affordable health care coverage.