Michigan Medicaid expansion hanging in balance - WNEM TV 5

Michigan Medicaid expansion hanging in balance

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By DAVID EGGERT, Associated Press

Gov. Rick Snyder says the Republican-led Senate's decision to adjourn without voting on Medicaid expansion is unacceptable.

The GOP governor said Thursday the Senate should "take a vote, not a vacation."

Snyder cut short his trade trip to Israel to be back in Lansing lobbying for expansion, but the Senate didn't act and won't return for two months after adjourning later in the day.

Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville said in a statement that the debate "is not over."

"Ensuring access to affordable, quality health care is one of the most significant challenges facing Michigan," Snyder said. "The Healthy Michigan plan will help achieve that. Members of the state House already have acted on this and I appreciate their diligence. Unfortunately, the Senate did not even bring this critical legislation up for a floor vote before leaving for the summer. That's unacceptable."

The state is projected to save $206 million in the 2014 fiscal year by providing Healthy Michigan plan benefits to those now receiving services paid for with general fund dollars.

Snyder's problem is his fellow Republicans make up two-thirds of the Senate, and the GOP is more resistant to expanding the Medicaid program under the federal health care law.

Hospitals, insurers, small businesses and the poor are pushing the Senate to act, while conservative groups are pressuring senators to stand firm.

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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