How Congress could discourage businesses from hiring U.S. citizens
Under the health care law, businesses with more than 50 employees who don’t offer health insurance (or who offer inadequate coverage) could be subject to fines of up to $3,000 per worker if at least one worker obtains coverage through a government-run exchange using federal subsidies.
The immigration bill allows those who have been in the country illegally to obtain provisional legal immigrant status — after several preconditions are met — even though they cannot apply for citizenship for at least a decade. But as Jed Graham of Investor’s Business Daily noted last week, because legal residents who are noncitizens are not eligible for the Obamacare subsidies, employers would be able to hire them without offering health insurance and they wouldn’t incur any fines.
Essentially, when combined, we’d have a system under which employers would be subject to a substantial tax on hiring American citizens that they would not be subject to if they were to hire newly legalized immigrants who have not yet obtained citizenship.