Maine Governor LePage says immigrants pose a health threat to America, gets slapped around

I like this photo of Gov. LePage holding the Heritage Foundation’s copy of the US Constitution.

Update! Reader Dana sent us this link16 Test positive for TB at Sacramento area high school—wonder where it came from???

Not physically slapped around, but verbally in the Bangor Daily News which apparently wants to debunk his claim.  Note the first sentence of the story by Christopher Cousins—if you don’t read beyond that, you have been told what the media wants you to believe.

….however, there are a large number of ACTIVE TB cases in Maine!

Regular readers may remember that Maine has become the go-to state for asylum seekers—migrants who got into the country one way or another and are now seeking ‘refugee’ status.  In Maine, while they are waiting for the decision, they can get various social services that are not available elsewhere.

There may be other states that give out welfare to asylum seekers, but I haven’t read about those.  Gov. LePage has been attempting to remove the sweetener that Maine has been providing.

From the Bangor Daily News:

AUGUSTA, Maine — The consensus among public health experts regarding Gov. Paul LePage’s comments linking illegal immigrants to the spread of infectious diseases during his State of the State address on Tuesday is that they have seen no data to back up his claims.

Officials from the LePage administration have provided no substantiation for the comments and have not responded since Wednesday to the Bangor Daily News’ requests for data and comment on the matter.
Here’s what the governor said:

“When a refugee comes here from a foreign country, they get a medical assessment, and we know their health. But when they come here illegally, they don’t get medical assessments. And one thing that we don’t want to see is the uptick of hepatitis C, HIV and tuberculosis. But it is here. We are dealing with it. And it is very costly. So if nothing else, they should be getting a medical assessment when they get here.”

By the way, even if a refugee gets a medical assessment before entering the US, the presence of TB or HIV is not a bar to entry.

So, after many paragraphs of making light of the governor’s comments we come to this one (below) on TB.  I was blown away by the number of ACTIVE Tuberculosis cases diagnosed in Maine.  Do you remember when one guy with active TB got on a plane somewhere a few years ago and all hell broke loose in the media — well, heck, why isn’t there a lot of news about these ACTIVE cases in Maine?  How many are there in other states?

The resettlement industry mouthpieces are quick to tell us that LATENT TB is no big deal.  O.K. but what about all these active cases getting in here?  Twenty plus cases of ACTIVE TB over three years is a lot of cases—and, you are paying for their meds!

Active tuberculosis cases were higher in 2012 and 2013 than they had been since 2009, with 15 reported cases in 2013. There were less than 10 new cases reported in 2014, according to Hannan’s data. The CDC also tracks latent cases, which means the tuberculosis bacteria is present but the patient shows no symptoms (untreated latent tuberculosis is a precursor to full-blown tuberculosis in up to 10 percent of cases). There were 433 latent cases recorded in 2013, up from 398 in 2012. The CDC report also includes the country of birth for people recorded to have latent tuberculosis. The top countries of origin for latent tuberculosis cases were Angola (41), Burundi (43), Congo (51), Iraq (41), Rwanda (38), Somalia (53) and the United States (78). The 2013 CDC report contains no information about how long the patients had been in Maine before their diagnosis.

See our ‘health issues’ category for more on diseases, mental health problems and other medical issues involving refugees.  I’ve often said that health concerns are going to have a far greater impact on American attitudes toward immigration than the fear of terrorists getting in here.

Our extensive archive on Maine is here.

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