Affordable Care Act and Illegal Immigration


The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was President Barack Obama’s comprehensive health care reform in March 2010. Known colloquially as the Obamacare law, it contains a slew of healthcare policies to expand healthcare coverage to millions of uninsured Americans. The law expanded Medicaid eligibility, established medical exchanges, authorized Americans to acquire or otherwise obtain medical insurance, and prohibited insurance companies from failing to cover or charging inflated rates due to pre-existing conditions. Recently, many politicians have expressed support for the development of healthcare coverage for immigrants without papers to enhance access to improved health services and products for all Americans. However, the program remains controversial, with different Americans having conflicting viewpoints (Bustamante et al., 2019). The ACA should exclude undocumented workers within the United States because they violate the U.S. Constitution and create security fears for Americans, the limited U.S. economy, and not Americans.

Main body

The unregistered immigrants within the U.S. borders violate the clauses of the U.S. Constitution. American immigration legislation is complex and how it works is very confusing. The United States has based the immigration legislation on the principles such as family reunification, admission, protection of refugees, and increasing diversity of foreigners with qualifications of value to the U.S. economy. Providing essential information on the design and functioning of the U.S. immigration system is crucial. The current immigration law body is known as the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The INA enables the U.S. to award about 675,000 permanent residence permits in different visa categories every year. When an immigrant gets a visa and goes to America, he or she becomes a legitimate permanent resident (LPR) (Beck et al., 2017). In some situations, non-citizens in the U.S. can already gain LPR status via a process called “status adjustment.” Nonetheless, many of them take advantage of the provision and end up violating specific clauses of the U.S. Constitution. Thus, including illegal foreigners in the health package will promote law-breaking in the country.

Allowing the ACA to cover illegal immigrants creates fear among Americans. Security agents use census statistics to plan security measures to safeguard people from supposed threats. In recent years, international migration has taken place at the forefront of several countries’ security agendas, including parts of North America. Besides the growing number of immigrants worldwide, the impression of immigrants and refugees as a safety threat has been created. Specifically, terrorist groups such as al Qaeda takes advantage of the policy loopholes to gain entry into the United States and terrorize the people residing therein. A section of the American population argues that immigrants’ strong support for family values strengthens and strengthens American values (Beck et al., 2017). Immigrants frequently play significant and visible roles in the United States military and local and federal government. However, providing health coverage to illegal citizens within the United States creates security fears amongst the residents residing within the U.S. boundaries.

The limited U.S. economy cannot sustain the illegal immigrants within the American region. The provision of health care and other vital social care for immigrants without documents imposes a tax burden on legal immigrants. Another way the state’s national interests are served is by the impact of immigration on the state economy. The effect of migration on both the home country and the host country will continue to be substantial. While there are economic benefits and drawbacks to migration, the expanding definition of security to include the economic system has focused more attention on the financial challenges posed by immigration, resulting in immigration being labeled a security problem (Uberoi et al., 2016). The financial stability of the state is being threatened by economic migrants, as well as by illegal migrants. Besides, the fact that the tax enforcement authorities track the documented citizens means that the legal immigrants and other registered Americans will experience an increased tax burden upon the decision to cover the health needs of the illegal immigrants. Thus, excluding undocumented immigrants will play a key role in boosting the country’s economic success.

Undocumented foreigners are not considered American citizens and hence are not eligible to enjoy special rights and freedoms. The majority of government benefits do not qualify for illegal immigrants. The program covers non-emergency Medicaid, SNAP, Supplementary Safety Income (SSI), Temporary Family Assistance (TANF), and most housing aid programs. The various federal and state government programs aim to safeguard American citizens’ sustainable existence (Beck et al., 2017). For instance, the ACA program endeavors to ensure that all Americans can access quality and timely health services and products despite the distinct conditions that might threaten their access. Thus, the argument that the unregistered immigrants are non-citizens disqualifies them from enjoying the freedoms and rights enjoyed by the Americans. Consequently, the illegal society members need not enjoy the benefits of the ACA to help discourage undesirable unlawful immigration through the various borders.

However, the Universal Declaration on Human Rights promotes the free and equal dignity and rights of all humans are born. They have reason and conscience, and they must act towards each other in the sense of patriotism. Each person shall, without distinction of race, color, gender, language, religion, an ideological or different viewpoint, nationality, socioeconomic status, birth, or any other status, be obligated to all of the freedoms and rights set forth by the Declaration (Acer & Byrne, 2017). Thus, the perceived illegal immigrants need to enjoy their rights and freedoms. Unfortunately, such individuals are unregistered and suppress the existing limited resources, exposing the public to undesirable and unsustainable living conditions. Besides, the difficulty in identifying undocumented persons might motivate them to engage in unethical behaviors.


In conclusion, the inclusion of undocumented foreigners in the ACA program exposes Americans to negative consequences that undermine their efforts to lead quality and productive lifestyles. Economists argue that all stakeholders have distinct duties towards realizing the progression of the American states and other global countries. Thus, the various entrusted authorities must create atmospheres that motivate the players to execute their duties. Unfortunately, the increasing number of illegal refugees and settlers exposes U.S. citizens to security threats and means that they will suffer undesirable financial implications that undermine the government’s duty to protect the rights and freedoms of every inhabitant. Although the exclusion of the unfortunate people violates their human rights, they are not considered American citizens, and hence the U.S. Constitution does not protect them. Immigrants are more likely to be victims of the controversial inclusion of illegal foreigners than American citizens without legal authorization in the country. Thus, the ACA should not allow undocumented persons to gain access to affordable and quality health services and products despite the operations’ controversies.


Acer, E., & Byrne, O. (2017). How the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 has undermined US refugee protection obligations and wasted government resources. Journal on Migration and Human Security, 5(2), 356-378.

Beck, T. L., Le, T. K., Henry-Okafor, Q., & Shah, M. K. (2017). Medical care for undocumented immigrants: national and international issues. Primary care: Clinics in Office Practice, 44(1), e1-e13.

Bustamante, A. V., Chen, J., McKenna, R. M., & Ortega, A. N. (2019). Health care access and utilization among US immigrants before and after the Affordable Care Act. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, 21(2), 211-218.

Uberoi, N., Finegold, K., & Gee, E. Health insurance coverage and the Affordable Care Act, 2010-2016. Washington (DC): Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation.

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DemoEssays. "Affordable Care Act and Illegal Immigration." December 22, 2022.