The Bush administration has recently argued that the President favors providing health insurance to “poor children first” and vetoed bipartisan children’s health legislation because it violates this principle. On “This Week” on October 7, Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt stated: “The President’s position can be summarized in three words: poor children first.”
But is the Administration’s claim about the bipartisan legislation accurate? Does the bill, in fact, put middle-income children ahead of poor ones? And do the Administration’s actions and policies put poor children first?