Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Jacob Press, COMMENT: POOR LAW: THE DEFICIT REDUCTION ACT'S CITIZENSHIP DOCUMENTATION
REQUIREMENT FOR MEDICAID ELIGIBILITY, 8 U. Pa. J. Const. L. 1033 (2006)
Included in the DRA is a new requirement that federal Medicaid funding must be denied to individuals who claim U.S. citizenship but are unable to produce acceptable documentation. ... One may properly infer that other states share Oregon's view that citizenship fraud is a non-phenomenon: they share the burden of Medicaid costs with the federal government, and they are free to impose more burdensome documentation requirements than the federally mandated minimum, but only four have chosen to do so. ... A Minimal Rational Basis Review of Section 6036 ... The government argued that the statute was rationally related to the goal of minimizing fraud: households with unrelated members were more likely than others to contain individuals who misrepresented their income or voluntarily remained poor, and such households were also relatively unstable, making abuses particularly difficult to detect. ... With this provision, the government has limited Medicaid eligibility to the class of U.S. citizens who are not only indigent, but can prove their citizenship by producing a birth certificate. ...