- The Washington Times - Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Newly sworn-in California Gov. Gavin Newsom, vowing to provide “sanctuary to all who seek it,” has proposed extending state health care coverage to more illegal immigrants living within the Golden State’s borders.

Hours after assuming office, Mr. Newsom released sweeping health care proposals to raise the age limit for illegal aliens covered by Medi-Cal from 19 to 26, which would make California “the first state in the nation to cover young undocumented adults through a state Medicaid program,” according to a Monday release from the governor’s office.

Mr. Newsom, who ran on a universal health care platform, also proposed expanding Obamacare subsidies to middle-class earners and reinstating the Obamacare individual mandate at the state level.

“No state has more at stake on the issue of health care. California must lead,” said Mr. Newsom in a statement. “We will use our market power and our moral power to demand fairer prices for prescription drugs. And we will continue to move closer to ensuring health care for every Californian.”

If anyone doubted his effort to position himself as the foil to the Trump administration, which has fought to stop illegal immigration, Mr. Newsom spelled it out in his inaugural address Monday by accusing the White House of “corruption and incompetence.”

“Here in California, we will prove that people of good faith, and firm will can still come together to achieve big things,” he said in his prepared remarks. “We will offer an alternative to the corruption and incompetence in the White House. Our government will be progressive, principled, and always on the side of the people.”

He made clear his opposition to the border wall sought by President Trump, saying children should not be “ripped away from their parents at the border” or “left hungry while politicians seek to pour billions into a wall that should never be built.”

Mr. Newsom also signed executive orders to create a California Surgeon General to address “the root causes of serious health conditions,” and establish a single state purchaser system for prescription drugs.

The 51-year-old Newsom served as lieutenant governor for eight years under outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown, who was term-limited, and as mayor of San Francisco from 2004-11.

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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