Join us on         

Assembly 2014: GOP Lawmakers Link Senate Medicaid Alternative to Arkansas Model

The Republican leadership in the House of Delegates is drawing parallels between the Senate’s private insurance Medicaid alternative proposal and an Arkansas model that failed to be reauthorized just yesterday.  The bill to continue funding for the plan got only 70 of the 75 votes needed to pass the 100-member chamber, but the Republican Speaker of the House says he will hold votes every day until it passes.  Both the Arkansas and Virginia models use federal Medicaid funds to purchase private insurance for the state’s lowest income residents.  The Arkansas program met many of the benchmarks it was intended to achieve. It signed up 100,000 people, many of them the so-called young invincibles needed to spread the risk pool. But Arkansas House Republican Majority Leader Bruce Westerman, who is leading the fight to defund the plan, says it’s a bad deal for the state.  Westerman says the longer the plan stays in effect the harder it will be to eliminate.