Vice President Mike Pence was very decisive about defending the Senate’s attempt to repeal and reform the Affordable Care Act as, during his speech at the National Governors Association Summer Meeting.
He said that Senator Mitch McConnell’s proposed legislation is very good as it would allow every governor to make his own unique plan to solve health care problem in his state.
Pence tried to use the fact that he was governor to convince the listeners, he said that addressing the needs of Indiana was very hard while he was governor, as federal government made it difficult.
“I know how important health care is to each and every one of you,” Pence said. “And Obamacare is imploding across the nation.”
If passed, latest version of Senate’s bill would give states to choose between the option of a per capita cap or a block grant. Medicaid would be converted to a fixed payment, whatever they choose.
This bill would also enable the insurers to make and offer health plans that they cannot under the Obamacare, as long as they also provide plans along with guidelines. It would also allow health savings accounts to cover insurance premiums for the first time. Two senators have already said they won’t support the bill, which means one more will be enough for bill not to pass.
“The truth is, these reforms are long overdue,” Pence said.
Some governors met earlier that day to discus the downsides of the bill, they called fellow governors to express the frustration with the bill.
Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy, a Democrat, told the press, “Either you want to want to destroy Medicaid and other health programs so you can give a giant tax reduction to the wealthiest .2 percent of our population, or you care about health care and the citizens of your state.”
He also said that this law “isn’t about politics, it’s about saving lives.” He said that Republican governors are placing their political agendas ahead of the citizen needs. They are worried taking a stance would be a “kiss of death,” he said.
He is proud that Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval’s outspoken opposition to the bill, despite his Republican affiliation.
Malloy and other governors explained how Medicaid expansion was very helpful in their states, and that their budgets will not withstand proposed legislation.
“Can I foresee $3 billion in revenue growth to cover the bill? The answer is no,” Malloy said.
They also warned that many people will lose their health insurance. Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, a Democrat, expressed concern over the potential loss of rural hospitals without Obamacare. “If we lose our rural hospitals, we lose our communities,” he said.
Democrat Raimondo said, that many will loose jobs if Obamacare get’s eradicated, she also added that on Rhode Island, hospital system is the biggest employer.
Also Democrat, Cooper said reminded about opioid epidemic, and said that this legislation will make it impossible to battle it.
Pence also said that $45 million is set aside to help eliminate the crisis.
Copper said that amount of money is a “fig leaf”, adding that many health care policies would not include substance abuse treatment, if the new legislation passes.