NEW REPORT: NOT A SINGLE U.S. GOVERNOR ACTUALLY SUPPORTS THE SENATE HEALTH CARE REPEAL BILL
NEW REPORT: NOT A SINGLE U.S. GOVERNOR ACTUALLY SUPPORTS THE SENATE HEALTH CARE REPEAL BILL
Governors Warn of the Disastrous Consequences the Senate Repeal Bill will Have on the Middle Class, Children, the Most Vulnerable, and State Budgets
The Senate’s repeal bill makes health care so much worse for so many people in so many ways, all to give huge tax breaks to the wealthy and big corporations. It simply can’t be fixed.
Don’t take our word for it, listen to governors — including many Republicans — who have serious concerns about the current Senate repeal bill, or oppose it outright. In fact, we hunted for a governor who s actually supported the Senate bill as it currently is — and it was difficult to find any. Our analysis* shows:
- 0 governors fully endorse the Senate bill
- 2 governors support the Senate bill with caveats (KY and SD)
- 17 governors are monitoring, reviewing, or have no comment (AL, FL, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, MI, MO, NE, NM, ND, OK, SC, TX and WY)
- 31 governors have concerns or oppose the Senate bill, including 14 Republican governors (AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, GA, LA, ME, MD, MA, MN, MS, MT, NV, NH, NJ, NY, NC, OH, OR, PA, RI, TN, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, and WI)
* — Republican governors italicized
Instead of cutting backroom deals, Republican Senators should start working with Democrats to keep what works and fix what doesn’t in the current law.
No public statement of support.
Gov. Bill Walker (I-AK) “Deeply Concerned” On The Senate Bill. “Governor Bill Walker announced on Thursday that he’s ‘deeply concerned’ about the Senate’s health care plan and has since dispatched his commissioner of Health and Social Services to Washington D.C. In a statement on Monday, the commissioner said, ‘Medicaid provides peace of mind to our most vulnerable Alaskans during their greatest times of health need. Governor Walker and I are working with our congressional delegation to ensure that Alaska’s voice is heard in this national health care debate.’” [KTUU, 6/27/17]
Gov. Bill Walker (I-AK): Medicaid “Should Be Protected.” “Alaskans pay the highest health care premiums in the country. In the Lower 48, a medical emergency typically means a $400 ambulance ride. In Alaska, it often means a $50,000 medevac. Access to affordable health care coverage is critical to provide necessary treatment resources to fight the state’s opioid epidemic. Access to affordable health care coverage is critical to building a Safer Alaska. Access to affordable health care coverage should be a nonpartisan issue. Two years ago, I chose to expand Medicaid coverage. Since then, nearly 34,000 Alaskans have received life-saving care — and peace of mind knowing they have health care coverage. That should be protected.” [Walker Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Doug Ducey (R-AZ) Wrote To Sen. McCain Outlining His Objections To The Senate Bill. “Ducey, meanwhile, wrote a letter to McCain obtained by POLITICO expressing support for repealing Obamacare, which he called “a policy disaster,” but outlining his objections to the Senate draft: He complained about a three-year phase-out of Medicaid expansion funding, saying he would not have enough time to plug holes in the state’s budget. He asked for more explicit Medicaid flexibility — and he said that federal funding for the program needs to grow at a rate exceeding that of medical inflation.
‘Medicaid must be able to pay for the real-world costs of providing care,’ Ducey wrote. Arizona’s Medicaid agency on Friday released an analysis that the draft Senate bill could cost the state roughly $7 billion through 2026.” [Politico, 6/24/17]
Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR): Senate Repeal Bill Would Cause “Massive Cost Shift” To States Because Of Medicaid Cuts And Arkansas “Could Not Absorb That Additional Investment” To Keep Everyone Who Has Coverage, Covered. “In a Little Rock news conference Thursday, Hutchinson said that without the changes he suggested, the Better Care Reconciliation Act would result in a ‘massive cost shift’ as it phases out enhanced federal funding that has gone to states such as Arkansas that expanded their Medicaid programs. ‘The state of Arkansas could not absorb that additional investment that would be required to maintain the coverage for 300,000 Arkansans’ covered under the expanded part of the state’s Medicaid program, Hutchinson said…’If the subsidy is not sufficient in the marketplace, then that individual who loses coverage under the Medicaid program will make the decision, I can’t afford it, and will ultimately end up with lost coverage,’ Hutchinson said.” [Arkansas Online, 6/30/17]
Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R-AR): “I Just Want To Be Able To Also Not Undo Some Really Significant Reform.” “‘I know that they’re trying to save money, and they rightfully should,’ said Mr. Hutchinson, whose state expanded Medicaid eligibility. ‘I just want to be able to also not undo some really significant reform that we’re trying to accomplish in Arkansas.’ Mr. Hutchinson has advocated the health bill either maintain higher levels of funding or exempt elderly and disabled people from caps on Medicaid spending. Without the extra federal help, he said, he would be forced to end the Medicaid expansion immediately.” [Wall Street Journal, 7/3/17]
Gov. Jerry Brown (D-CA): “Trumpcare 2.0 Has The Same Stench-And Effect-” As The House Bill. “Millions Will Lose Health Care Coverage, While Millionaires Profit.” “Trumpcare 2.0 has the same stench — and effect — as the bill House Republicans and the White House slapped together last month: Millions will lose health care coverage, while millionaires profit. The American people deserve better.” [Brown Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. John Hickenlooper (D-CO): The Senate Bill “Makes Even Deeper Cuts To Health Care For The Most Vulnerable And Shifts The Costs Onto Hard Working Middle Class Coloradans.” “The Senate’s health care bill, like the House bill, will take Colorado backward. It makes even deeper cuts to health care for the most vulnerable and shifts the costs onto hard working middle class Coloradans. It’s no surprise that a bill drafted in secret, without public hearings and scrutiny, and planned for a rushed vote within days, will hurt Coloradans. We urge Senators Gardner and Bennet to vote no on this flawed bill.” [Hickenlooper Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Dan Malloy (D-CT): “Millions Will Lose Coverage. Premiums Will Go Up. Those With Pre-Existing Conditions Will Be Priced Out Of Coverage. Medicaid Will Be Eviscerated.” “Republicans in the Senate had an opportunity to reject the disastrous bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives and work together with Democrats to build on the successes of the Affordable Care Act. Instead, they chose to double down on Trumpcare — which is as cruel as it is dangerous. Millions will lose coverage. Premiums will go up. Those with pre-existing conditions will be priced out of coverage. Medicaid will be eviscerated. Make no mistake, people will needlessly die under this plan. It should come as no surprise that Republicans preferred to hash out the details of this bill behind closed doors, rather than give the American people the opportunity to understand what is going to happen to their families.” [Malloy Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Jay Carney (D-DE): “The Senate Republican Healthcare Bill Would Lead To Thousands Of Delawareans Losing Their Health Insurance And Cause Premiums To Rise Dramatically For Older Delawareans.” “With thousands in Delaware slated to lose heath care if the Republican-crafted attempt at an American Care Act replacement passes, Gov. John Carney attacked it as ‘unacceptable.’ ‘The Senate Republican healthcare bill would lead to thousands of Delawareans losing their health insurance and cause premiums to rise dramatically for older Delawareans,’ Carney said. ‘It would force the state’s Medicaid program to reduce or eliminate coverage for vulnerable populations — like those suffering from addiction.’” [WDEL, 6/27/17]
Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL) Issued “A Carefully Worded Statement” That “Avoided Saying That The Senate Should Approve The Bill.” “In a carefully worded statement released last week, after the bill was unveiled, Scott avoided saying that the Senate should approve the bill, and instead suggested the measure that includes deep cuts to Medicaid needs to be tinkered with. Without clearly spelling out what he wants, Scott suggested changes needed to be made to treat states equitably, adding, ‘Florida taxpayers deserve the same treatment as every other state under the Medicaid program.’” [Politico, 6/27/17]
Gov. Nathan Deal (R-GA): “We Want To Make Sure We Are Not Punished Because We Did Not Expand Our Medicaid Population.” “Gov. Nathan Deal took a cautious stance on the embattled Senate health bill Thursday, urging lawmakers not to “punish” Georgia and other states that didn’t expand their Medicaid program while stopping short of opposing the measure. Deal said in an interview he was concerned about changes to the Medicaid program that could leave the states to pick up the tab. But he said he wanted to reserve final judgment until Senate GOP leaders hobbled by a wave of defections reveal a new draft of the measure…’From a state standpoint, our main concern is our Medicaid program. As I have said before, we want to make sure we are not punished because we did not expand our Medicaid population,’ he said, adding: ‘We want to be treated fairly.’” [Atlanta Journal Constitution, 6/29/17
No public statement of support.
No public statement of support.
No public statement of support.
Gov. Eric Holcomb (R-IN) “Anxious” To See A Final Senate Repeal Bill. “Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb is ‘anxious’ to see a final version of Senate Republican’s health care overhaul. But the Republican governor said Monday that he will withhold judgment on the divisive measure until then.” [Associated Press, 6/26/17]
Gov. Kim Reynolds (R-IA) Said She Was Monitoring The Senate Repeal Bill And States Need Flexibility. “ “Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says she is monitoring Congress as lawmakers draft legislation that would make sweeping changes to federal health care policy…’Probably one of the biggest things that (Congress) could do, and that’s in our stopgap proposal, is to give us some flexibility in how we design the program,’ Reynolds said Monday during her weekly news conference. “Because we know what Iowans need. I don’t know what Colorado needs. I don’t know what North Dakota needs. But I know the health insurance environment in Iowa.’” [Quad City Times, 6/26/17]
No public statement of support.
Gov. Matt Bevin (R-KY) Called The Senate Proposal “Not Really A Good Bill” But Would Reluctantly Support It. “Kentucky’s Republican governor said he reluctantly supports the Senate’s plan to replace the Affordable Care Act and blamed its shaky prospects for passage on ‘mushy moderates’ who ‘don’t have enough spine’ to pass the bill. … Bevin told WVHU radio host Tom Roten on Tuesday the Senate proposal was ‘not really a good bill’ but said it would start the process of giving states more control. He said he understands some conservative opposition, but said Republican lawmakers who support the Medicaid expansion should be ashamed.” [Associated Press, 6/27/17]
Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA): BCRA “Will Result In The Loss Of Coverage For Millions Of Americans.” “Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards sent a letter to U.S. Senators Bill Cassidy and John Kennedy urging them to oppose the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA). In the letter, Gov. Edwards outlines how the bill will result in loss of coverage for millions of Americans, punishes Louisiana for running a lean Medicaid program, and effectively eliminates our state’s Medicaid expansion resulting in hundreds of thousands of Louisianans losing lifesaving primary care access. ‘The BCRA cuts funding for health care to states that will result in the loss of coverage for millions of Americans, punishes Louisiana for running a lean Medicare program and effectively eliminates our state’s Medicaid expansion, resulting in hundreds of thousands of Louisianans losing lifesaving access to primary and diagnostic care,’ Edwards wrote.” [Edwards Statement, 6/26/17]
Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA) Said Medicaid Expansion Would End In 2021 For Louisiana. “When they talk about phasing out Medicaid expansion starting in 2021, for Louisiana it will end in 2021” — La. Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) [Rachel Roubein Tweet, 6/28/17]
Gov. Paul LePage (R-ME) Said He Did Not Support The Senate Bill. “Count Gov. Paul LePage among those opposing the Senate health care bill. LePage was asked if he backs the legislation and he said no, complaining that the bill doesn’t go far enough to fix current law.” [Portland Press Herald, 6/28/17]
Gov. Larry Hogan (R-MD) Spokesperson: The Senate Repeal Bill Proposals “Do Not Work For Maryland,” And “Congress Should Go Back To The Drawing Board In An Open, Transparent And Bipartisan Fashion.” “‘We know the current system needs to be fixed, but the proposals that are being considered in Congress do not work for Maryland,’ Hogan spokeswoman Amelia Chasse said in a statement — the strongest the governor’s office has issued on the issue. ‘Congress should go back to the drawing board in an open, transparent and bipartisan fashion to craft a bill that works for all Americans,’ she said.” [Baltimore Sun, 6/22/17]
Gov. Charlie Baker (R-MA) Spokesperson: “The Administration Is Concerned…This Version Falls Short And Will Result In Significant Funding Losses For Our State.” “Republican Gov. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts echoed Kasich’s sentiments on the Senate’s plan, and a spokeswoman for the governor said the health care bill would cause Massachusetts to lose money. ‘Since Washington has started debating reforms to the health care law, Governor Baker has been clear that any changes must preserve our ability to provide quality healthcare coverage in Massachusetts and allow flexibility to responsibly manage programs like Medicaid — and the administration is concerned that upon first review, this version falls short and will result in significant funding losses for our state,’ Lizzy Guyton, a spokeswoman for Baker, said. ‘Governor Baker will keep working with other governors, the congressional delegation and federal officials to advocate for solutions that work for Massachusetts, including protecting our waiver to support behavioral health and fighting the opioid epidemic and funding for Planned Parenthood,’ she continued.” [Washington Examiner, 6/22/17]
Gov. Charlie Baker (R-MA): “Ensure That The Bill Does Not Adversely Harm The People We Were Elected To Serve.” “As Congress continues to debate changes to our nation’s health care system, the bipartisan National Governors Association (NGA) urges you to ensure that governors are given the opportunity to review, and react to any health care reform legislation. As Chief Executives of our states, we have an obligation to protect the health and welfare of our citizens. The nation’s governors are ready to work with leaders in Washington to make health care more accessible and affordable to the people we serve. However, governors must be given adequate time to determine the impact any health care bill will have on their states and residents, and ensure that the bill does not adversely harm the people we were elected to serve. It is critical that any changes to Medicaid and the private health insurance market reflect states’ experience as major health care purchasers, regulators, and administrators who will be responsible for carrying out new reforms. On behalf of the National Governors Association, we urge you to give states sufficient time to review the legislation before proceeding, so that the full impact of the legislation may be understood and explained to the American people.” [Statement, 6/27/17]
Gov. Rick Snyder (R-MI) Said He Was Reviewing The Senate Bill. “Included in that group was Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, who is still reviewing the bill to determine the impacts on the state’s insurance markets, Medicaid program and Healthy Michigan Plan, the state’s Medicaid expansion. ‘Gov. Snyder continues to believe the Healthy Michigan Plan has had a positive effect on our state and wants to be sure that quality, affordable health care remains available for all Michiganders,’ Ari Adler, spokesman for Snyder, said in a statement to the Washington Examiner.” [Washington Examiner, 6/22/17]
Gov. Mark Dayton (D-MN) Said The Senate Repeal Bill Cuts Would Have “Catastrophic” Effects On Minnesota. “Governor Mark Dayton says the U.S. Senate’s proposed health care bill would have ‘catastrophic’ effects on Minnesota health care…’They talk about giving governors more flexibility… the only flexibility we’re going to be given is deciding who to cut and what to cut,’ said Dayton.” [KMSP, 7/5/17]
Gov. Phil Bryant (R-MS): “Continuing To Expand Obamacare Is Not A Repeal.” “It is clear Obamacare is damaging to Americans. The House and Senate have offered solutions; and like the president said, negotiations will continue. I am confident a Republican Congress will produce legislation that is far superior to the current law. However, continuing to expand Obamacare is not a repeal.” — Gov. Phil Bryant [Clarion Ledger, 6/22/17]
No public statement of support.
Gov. Steve Bullock (D-MT): “This Bill Will Threaten The Health Of Hard-Working Montana Families In Order To Cut Taxes For The Wealthy.” “The latest health care bill is exactly what’s wrong with Washington DC. Drafted in secret without bipartisan support or public input, this bill will threaten the health of hard-working Montana families in order to cut taxes for the wealthy. Forcing a dangerous and costly health care bill like this one onto Americans isn’t making our health care system better — it’s hurting those who need it most.” [Bullock Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Pete Ricketts (R-NE): “We Do Have A Concern To Make Sure The Federal Government Just Isn’t Shifting Costs From The Federal Government To Us.” “‘Certainly, we at the state would like to have more flexibility with regard to how we design those programs,’ Ricketts says, ‘but I think we do have a concern to make sure the federal government just isn’t shifting costs from the federal government to us; just mandating that we have to do things and then asking us to pay for it.’” [Nebraska Radio Network, 6/27/17]
Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-NV): “There Hasn’t Been Anything Presented To Me That Would Alleviate That Concern” About Medicaid. “Gov. Brian Sandoval said Wednesday a U.S. Senate plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act remains a major threat to Nevada’s future fiscal health. The governor said with no proposed changes that would address Nevada’s decision in 2013 to expand Medicaid, he cannot support the legislation. Sandoval said both he and U.S. Sen. Dean Heller remain opposed as they announced at an event in Las Vegas last month. ‘My position is the same in terms of protecting the 200,000-plus lives of the newly eligibles associated with the Medicaid expansion,’ Sandoval said. ‘They are living healthier and happier lives. We have cut our uninsured rate by more than half. ‘As I sit here today, there hasn’t been anything presented to me that would alleviate that concern.’” [Las Vegas Review Journal, 7/5/17]
Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-NV): “The Current Bill, As Written, Is Something That Needs To Change.” [Twitter, 6/23/17]
Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-NV): “It Remains My Priority To Protect Nevada’s Expansion Population To Ensure Our Most Vulnerable, Especially Individuals With Mental Illness, The Drug Addicted, The Chronically Ill, And Our Children, Will Always Have Access To Health Care.” “My office and the Department of Health and Human Services are reviewing the bill and will assess its potential effect on all Nevadans. I am disappointed that Congress did not include us in the consideration of this bill and we have not seen in until today. While the current healthcare system needs improvement, it remains my priority to protect Nevada’s expansion population to ensure our most vulnerable, especially individuals with mental illness, the drug addicted, chronically ill, and our children, will always have access to health care.” [Sandoval Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Brian Sandoval (R-NV): “It Appears The Proposed Bill Will Dramatically Reduce Coverage And Will Negatively Impact Our Future State Budgets.” “Preliminarily, it appears that the proposed bill will dramatically reduce coverage and will negatively impact our future state budgets, which causes me great concern. My office is in regular communication with Senator Heller’s office and I have had ongoing discussions with the Senator about the impact of healthcare reform on the State of Nevada.” [Sandoval Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Chris Sununu (R-NH): “The Downshifting Of Costs Into A State LIke Ours, It’s Unfair, And More Importantly, It’s Not Practical.” Sununu: “Well, I’ve expressed my concern a couple of days ago in a letter. The repercussions are pretty drastic for the state of New Hampshire, especially when you’re looking at the resources that would come in. You’re looking at, at least, a billion and a half dollars of cost to the state of New Hampshire over the next 10 years. We are a no-income tax state. We have no sales tax, we have no income tax. We really control our costs at the local level. That downshifting of costs into a state like ours, it’s unfair and, more importantly, it’s not practical. There’s really no practical way to implement the plan as is.” [CNN New Day, 6/29/17]
Gov. Chris Sununu (R-NH): “Our Medicaid Expansion Has Been One Of The Primary Tools To Combat Our Opioid Crisis.” “‘As with the House version, New Hampshire would be locked into per capita rates that would force the state to confront the hardest of choices: make severe cuts to its Medicaid program, such as ending eligibility categories or eliminating coverage of vital services, or both,’ Sununu wrote. ‘We are further concerned that BCRA jeopardizes the investment New Hampshire made in its Medicaid expansion. Our Medicaid expansion has been one of the primary tools to combat our opioid crisis.’” [Sununu Statement, 6/27/17]
Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) Not Ready To Go Public On What Changes He Is Urging The Trump Administration To Do On Repeal. “Gov. Chris Christie has President Donald Trump’s ear and the governor is concerned about how changes from Washington to repeal Obamacare could harm New Jersey residents who benefited from Medicaid expansion. But the governor continues to be unwilling to detail his talks with the president about how hard he’s lobbying against a GOP proposal that would slash Medicaid funding. He also insisted Tuesday he’s ‘not ready to declare a crisis yet’ over the controversial Republican bill being debated in the U.S. Senate. ‘I’m not going to go down to Capitol Hill and pour gasoline on myself and set myself on fire,’ Christie said at a public event in Trenton.’If the Medicaid expansion is changed without an appropriate transition and the ability for us to deal with those issues, that’s a problem,’ he said. ‘It seems to me, from what I’m reading, that the GOP bill in the Senate is changing by the day as they attempt to get more votes for it.’ Christie added: ‘We’ll have to see what actually comes out of there.’” [NJ.com, 6/28/17]
Gov. Susana Martinez (R-NM) Is Reviewing The Senate Bill. “On Thursday, her spokesman Joseph Cueto said Martinez hasn’t had a chance to review the Senate’s health care proposal but will look closely at how it protects vulnerable New Mexicans. ‘She will also look at whether it lowers or abolishes the damaging fees imposed on working families and businesses by Obamacare,’ Cueto said.” [Santa Fe New Mexican, 6/22/17]
Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY): “Senate Republicans Have Broken Their Promise To Protect The American People And Are Trying To Pass An Inhumane Piece Of Legislation That Hurts Middle Class New Yorkers, Discriminates Against Women, Defunds Planned Parenthood, And Turns Its Back On The Most Vulnerable Americans.” “The Senate Republican health care bill continues the ultra-conservative assault on New Yorkers and our values. Senate Republicans have broken their promise to protect the American people and are trying to pass an inhumane piece of legislation that hurts middle class New Yorkers, discriminates against women, defunds Planned Parenthood, and turns its back on the most vulnerable Americans. Like the disastrous House proposal, this bill will strip coverage from millions of New Yorkers, cost New York State billions of dollars, and devastate our health care system. Senate Republicans have intensified the war on Medicaid services that New Yorkers rely on. And by keeping the reckless Collins-Faso Amendment, this bill targets New York and threatens to slash an additional $2.3 billion in Medicaid funding for the state, leading to devastating cuts to our hospitals, nursing homes, and home care providers.” [Cuomo Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Roy Cooper (D-NC): “This Senate Plan Especially Hurts Children, Seniors And The Disabled And It Dumps More Of The Cost Of Health Care On State Taxpayers.” “Health care should be affordable and accessible but this new Senate plan, like the House bill before it, does the opposite. As I said at last week’s WH Opioid Commission-taking away health care from millions of people hurts our battle against the opioid crisis. This Senate plan especially hurts children, seniors and the disabled and it dumps more of the cost of health care on state taxpayers. North Carolina’s senators should oppose it. — RC” [Cooper Tweets, 6/22/17]
No public statement of support.
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH) Has “Deep Concerns” On The Senate Bill, Including How The Bill Impacts “Our Most Vulnerable, Including Those Who Are Dealing With Drug Addiction.” “I have deep concerns with the details of the U.S. Senate’s plan to fix America’s health care system and the resources needed to help our most vulnerable, including those who are dealing with drug addiction, mental illness, and chronic health problems and have no where else to turn.” [Kasich Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): Health Care Will Not Be “Solved With A One-Party Approach That’s Developed Behind Closed Doors, Without Public Discussion And Input. I’m Encouraging Senators To Step Back And Take A Good, Hard Look At This Important Issue.” “Sustainable solutions to the many complex problems facing our health care system will never be solved with a one-party approach that’s developed behind closed doors, without public discussion and input. I’m encouraging senators to step back and take a good, hard look at this important issue — and to reach across the aisle in working toward solutions. That’s the only way to address the flaws of Obamacare that we can all agree need to be fixed.” [Kasich Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): “This Bill Is Unacceptable.” [New York Times, 6/27/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): On GOP Support After CBO Score: “Are You Kidding Me?” “Appearing in Washington, Gov. John R. Kasich of Ohio cited the 22 million projection and expressed bewilderment that fellow Republicans would be on board with the bill. ‘And they think that’s great?’ he asked. ‘That’s good public policy? What, are you kidding me?’ [New York Times, 6/27/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): “A Few Billion Dollars On Opioids… That’s Like Spitting In The Ocean.” “‘I told him if they hand you a few billion dollars on opioids … that’s like spitting in the ocean,’ Kasich said. ‘I’ve talked to Rob a million times. He knows exactly what my concerns are.’ Kasich has made his opposition to the GOP bill clear before, but Tuesday he ratcheted up his criticism at a joint news conference with Colorado Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper.” [USA Today, 6/27/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): “Why Don’t [Republicans] Go And Live Under…Medicaid For A While?” “ Kasich said congressional Republicans should try getting their own health care through Medicaid or purchasing insurance with the miserly subsidies the GOP plan offers. ‘Why don’t we have those folks go and live under … Medicaid for a while?’ Kasich said. ‘Why don’t we have them go live on their exchange where they can get two, three, four thousand dollars a year to cover their health care exchange costs.’” [USA Today, 6/27/17]
Gov. John Kasich (R-OH): Democrats Should “Stand And Challenge The Republicans To Negotiate With Them.” “Kasich didn’t reserve all his ire for his own party. He also blasted lawmakers of all stripes for acting like a bunch of fifth-graders. ‘We have a health care civil war going on,’ he said. ‘It’s all about recrimination.’ He said Republicans should jettison their current bill and ‘start over,’ while Democrats should ‘stand and challenge the Republicans to negotiate with them.’’” [USA Today, 6/27/17]
No public statement of support.
Gov. Kate Brown (D-OR): “The Bottom Line Is The Legislation Is Cruel.” “‘The bottom line is the Legislation is cruel,’ Gov. Kate Brown said Wednesday. ‘It forces Americans to pay more for inferior care. It will slash funding for public health emergencies, epidemics and opioid abuse treatment.’” [Statesman Journal, 6/28/17]
Gov. Kate Brown (D-OR): Legislation Is “A Giant Tax Break Disguised As A Health Care Bill.” “The Senate health care bill is no more than a giant tax break disguised as a health care bill. As a health care bill, it is cruel. It creates barriers to preventive services. It forces low-income and older Americans to pay more for inferior care, and would rip coverage from more than 440,000 Oregonians. All of this under the guise of lowering health care costs. Despite these draconian cuts, Oregon will not back down. I will continue to fight to ensure every Oregonian has access to quality, comprehensive health care that lifts Oregonians up and supports families through good and bad times.” [Facebook Statement, 6/28/17]
Gov. Kate Brown (D-OR): “Legislation Would Punish Our Most Vulnerable. “Oregon Democrats heaped scorn on the bill. Gov. Kate Brown said the legislation is all about big tax cuts for the wealthy. ‘Today’s Congressional Budget Office report confirms that the Senate health care bill is no more than a tax bill masquerading as a health care bill,’ Brown said. ‘By slashing the progress Oregon has made in the past four years, this legislation would punish our most vulnerable — kids, people with disabilities, and seniors.’” [Oregonian, 6/26/17]
Gov. Tom Wolf (D-PA): “The Senate Plan Prioritizes Tax Cuts For The Wealthy, Modest Deficit Reductions And Achieving A Political Victory Over Families Who Need Lifesaving Care.” “The deeper and more devastating cuts to Medicaid in this plan make it even crueler than the House plan. Some politicians in Washington are completely disconnected from the reality of how cutting Medicaid will damage real Pennsylvania families, and communities. Seniors in need of home or nursing care, children with disabilities, and rural hospitals and working families relying on Medicaid will all be left behind. The Senate plan prioritizes tax cuts for the wealthy, modest deficit reductions and achieving a political victory over families who need lifesaving care.” [Wolf Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Tom Wolf (D-PA): “It Is Time For Washington Republicans To Restart And Begin Listening To The Patients, Doctors, States and Communities Who Will Ultimately Shoulder The Burden Of Their Decisions.” “Over the past few weeks, I have joined Republican and Democratic governors in opposing cuts to Medicaid, but we have been shut out of the process and unable to give our residents a voice. It is time for Washington Republicans to restart and begin listening to the patients, doctors, states and communities who will ultimately shoulder the burden of their decisions. We need a legislative process that is patient-focused, inclusive, bipartisan, honest and open. This has been the complete opposite.” [Wolf Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Gina Raimondo (D-RI): Senate Bill “Devastating” To Rhode Island. “Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo said Wednesday she is deeply concerned about U.S. Senate Republicans’ proposed health care bill, suggesting Rhode Island would struggle to handle the deep cuts to Medicaid funding the party’s leaders are contemplating. ‘I don’t know what’s going to happen with Obamacare,’ Raimondo told reporters. If the Senate passes the bill before them, that is devastating to Rhode Island. Everything’s on the table. We’re going to have to revisit everything.’” [WPRI, 6/28/17]
Gov. Gina Raimondo (D-RI): Health Care Bill Really “A Tax Cut For The Wealthiest.” “Governor Gina M. Raimondo on Thursday said the U.S. Senate Republican’s version of the health care bill would undo the progress made in expanding coverage for Rhode Islanders and said leaders have a “moral obligation” to oppose it. ‘The Senate Trumpcare Bill is not a health care bill — it’s a tax cut for the wealthiest people in our nation that’s being paid for by the poorest,’ Raimondo said in a statement. ‘If this passes, it puts all of the progress we’ve made in Rhode Island at risk. As leaders, we have a moral obligation to stand up for the most vulnerable people in our community — and that’s exactly who Trumpcare would hurt.’” [Providence Journal, 6/29/17]
Gov. Gina Raimondo (D-RI): Health Care Bill Is “Immoral.” “Rhode Island’s elected senators and representatives in Washington, D.C., and Gov. Gina M. Raimondo, all of them Democrats, aggressively attacked a newly unveiled Senate Republican proposal for changing Obamacare on Thursday, invoking words like ‘immoral’ and ‘wretched’ and ‘mean.’ ‘Congressional Republicans are trying to pass an immoral piece of legislation, and they’re hoping that no one notices,’ Raimondo said in a news release, asserting that the Affordable Care Act is working in Rhode Island, where 100,000 residents depend on it. They also argued that the proposal jeopardizes health care for the sake of offering a tax cut to the most wealthy. ‘I stand with hundreds of thousands of Rhode Islanders, including Senators Reed and Whitehouse and Congressmen Langevin and Cicilline in vocal, active opposition to this disastrous proposal,’ Raimondo said. [Providence Journal, 6/22/17]
Gov. Henry McMaster (R-SC) Will Follow The Senate Bill Closely, Encouraged By Some Parts. “Gov. Henry McMaster is encouraged by many aspects of the Senate version of the bill released Thursday, his spokesman Brian Symmes said. ‘What the Governor has made clear many times before is that he thinks Obamacare has failed and that it’s imperative that we replace it,’ he said. ‘The Governor will follow (the bill) closely as it’s debated on the Senate floor and is looking forward to evaluating how it will affect South Carolinians.’” [Greenville Online, 6/26/17]
Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R-SD) Said Medicaid Cuts Could Save The Federal Government Money. “A proposal to slash funding to Medicaid could be the only opportunity to shrink the federal deficit in a divided Congress, Gov. Dennis Daugaard said Thursday. The Republican governor said shrunken Medicaid funding laid out in the Better Care Reconciliation Act, shared Thursday by a group of Senate Republicans, could create needed savings for the federal government. ‘That might be the only way that we will ever get control of spending,’ Daugaard said… Daugaard said the Senate bill’s provision striking some of the funding for Medicaid likely wouldn’t affect the “most frail populations” currently receiving coverage. Instead it would impact low-income adults who receive insurance through the program. ‘I think everyone wants to provide care for those who need help,” Daugaard said. “At the same time we don’t want to end up becoming like Greece.’” [Indianapolis Star, 6/22/17]
Gov. Bill Haslam (R-TN): “Our Concerns Continue To Be Around [That] It Looks Like They’re Going To Pass A Lot More Of The Responsibility To The States. Gov. Bill Haslam is not only concerned about the current version of the bill in front of the U.S. Senate to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, he’s also skeptical about its chance of passage. “‘Our concerns continue to be around (that) it looks like they’re going to pass a lot more of the responsibility to the states,’ Haslam said Thursday at an event in Mt. Juliet. One concern is about how the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act would tie Medicaid funding to consumer inflation rather than medical inflation, which grows at a higher rate. The Senate version of the bill would tie federal funding for Medicaid starting in 2025 to the consumer price index — the growth rate of all consumer goods — for all urban consumers. The House version ties federal funding for Medicaid to medical inflation. Experts have said the Senate’s approach would result in steeper cuts to funding over time than the House version.
Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) Did Not Take A Formal Position On The Senate Bill. “The office of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, meanwhile, issued a statement Monday that, while taking no position on the Senate draft, backs the general Republican plan to phase out Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion in the 31 states that adopted the plan. ‘He believes that Texas and other states that had the foresight not to expand Medicaid under a broken and failing Obamacare law should not have to bail out those states that did,’ the statement said. ‘Ultimately, the Governor would like to see a bill that covers pre-existing conditions, gives states greater flexibility to operate Medicaid programs with accountability, and allows states sufficient time to transition to a new system.’” [Laredo Morning Times, 6/27/17]
Gov. Gary Herbert (R-UT): “I Would Hope That The Republicans Would Reach Across The Aisle To Get Democrats Support.” “‘I think there’s a way to have more bipartisan support, and I would hope that the Republicans would reach across the aisle to get democrats support,’ Herbert said.” [Good4Utah.com, 6/22/17]
Gov. Phil Scott (R-VT): “From What I’ve Heard, It Would Be Detrimental For Vermont.” “Scott said at his weekly news conference Thursday that he has not yet fully reviewed the health care proposal. Still, it appears it will harm the state, the governor said. ‘From what I’ve heard, it would be detrimental for Vermont. It isn’t that much different than what was proposed before,’ he said. ‘As I’ve said numerous times, we rely heavily on federal funding in Vermont and we took advantage of the expansion of Medicaid, so we’re very reliant,’ Scott said. ‘Any changes to Medicaid will be an issue for us and could be detrimental.’” [Rutland Herald, 6/23/17]
Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D-VA): “This Bill Will Force Americans To Pay More For Less.” “The legislation unveiled by Republicans in the U.S. Senate today would be a disaster for Virginia families, our health care system and our budget. If this bill becomes law, it will raise costs for thousands of Virginians, particularly those who need health care the most like seniors and individuals with disabilities. Many families will be forced to drop their coverage because they can no longer afford it, putting their economic security and even their lives at risk. This bill would cost Virginia’s budget hundreds of millions of dollars by placing a per-capita cap on Medicaid, leaving us with the choice to cut critical health and long-term care services for people who need them, slash schools and transportation, or raise taxes. This bill will also significantly impede our efforts to combat the opioid and behavioral health crises Virginia and many other states face by jeopardizing coverage for people who are struggling with addiction. The content of this legislation and the secretive process the Senate used to devise it are a slap in the face to American taxpayers who expect their leaders to work for them, not for partisan special interests. At a time when we should be working together to expand access to affordable care, this bill will force Americans to pay more for less. On behalf of the people of this Commonwealth, I urge President Trump and Republicans in congress to drop this assault on our health care system and our economy and take the simple steps needed to improve the Affordable Care Act.” [McAuliffe Statement, 6/22/17]
Gov. Jay Inslee (D-WA): The Senate Bill Takes Away Coverage From Millions To Pay For A Tax Cut For The Wealthy. “In complete darkness with no hearings, limited CBO scoring, and no involvement from anyone outside the all-male gang of 13, Republicans have made clear they want to fast-track legislation that will have far-reaching impacts on our nation’s economy and life-threatening consequences for millions of families whose health care will be taken away. And the worst part? All of these efforts aren’t aimed at reforming health care. Rather, they are the GOP’s plan to finance the president’s proposed tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans.” [Inslee Medium Post, 6/22/17]
Gov. Jim Justice (D-WV): Cuts To Medicaid “Beyond Catastrophic.” “Saying it would be ‘beyond catastrophic’ to make further cuts to Medicaid, Gov. Jim Justice wrote letters to U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito, thanking them for opposing the Senate health care bill… Justice wrote that the cuts would affect 175,000 West Virginians who benefit from Medicaid expansion. ‘Since so many of our people count on Medicaid, any cut to Medicaid would destroy families in West Virginia,’ Justice’s letter to Capito said. ‘We can’t put the 175,000 West Virginians who benefit from the Medicaid expansion at risk of losing coverage. The consequences would be beyond catastrophic.’” [Bluefield Daily Telegraph, 6/30/17]
Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI): Opposes The Senate Bill Because It Would Penalize Wisconsin. “Walker — like groups representing the state’s doctors and hospitals — opposes the current bill because it would penalize Wisconsin, which has turned down nearly $700 million in federal Medicaid expansion money, and lock in a system of funding disparity between expansion and non-expansion states.” [Associated Press, 6/27/17]
No public statement of support.