How popular is the idea of giving free healthcare to illegal immigrants?

One of the more memorable moments from the Democratic debates came when they were discussing Medicare for All and government-run healthcare programs in general. The candidates were asked for a show of hands by those who felt that illegal immigrants should receive free healthcare under such programs. Each and every one of them raised their hands.

Fair enough. If that’s your position, make your case to the public. But while the idea is certainly appealing to many in the progressive wing of their own party, they may find they have a much harder time selling it to the rest of the public. That CNN poll that dropped yesterday had some rather strange numbers in it when it came to ranking the candidates (at least compared to other recent surveys), but it asked a few more questions besides who people planned to vote for. One of them was the subject at hand about healthcare for illegal immigrants. The results are in and it’s not even close.

That’s 59% opposed and 38% supporting with almost nobody who hasn’t already made up their mind. It’s a more than twenty point spread in a survey with a three-point margin of error. In other words, it’s completely lopsided and the Democrats are sitting on the wrong side of the fence.

The Trump campaign was quick to pick up on the news, as well as the proposal some of them are pitching about effectively eliminating all private health insurance. That is also going over about as well as a lead balloon.

Mark this down as just the latest example of how far the Democrats’ base is driving them to the left and how increasingly out of touch they are with the rest of the country. That’s the perpetual trap that shows up when either party has a large, chaotic field jockeying for the nomination. Every time one of them proposes a policy they believe is popular with the base, the next one comes along and pitches something even more radical. Pretty soon they’re staking out positions that the moderates and independents around the country aren’t going to swallow and it comes back to bite them during the general election.

This is precisely how we made our way from a discussion about some sort of limited, student debt assistance to sixteen trillion dollars worth of free college for everybody. It’s how a debate over relief for Dreamers and some possible immigration reform turned into calls to completely abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement. What was once a call not to give quite such a large tax cut to America’s highest earners is now a cry to jack up every single person’s taxes so we can hand out free stuff to everybody.

But hey… you run with that Medicare for illegal aliens plan next fall, Democrats. Don’t worry about how massively unpopular it is. I’m sure it will all work out just fine for you.