GOP guvs: States should get say in health care

The Denver Post - - NEWS - By Scott Con­don

Mem­bers of the Repub­li­can Gov­er­nors Panel speak­ing at the As­pen In­sti­tute of­fered some ad­vice for their col­leagues in the Se­nate: They aren’t look­ing for a big health care fix from Congress.

In­stead, the gov­er­nors want the fed­eral gov­ern­ment to pro­vide fed­eral money and let the states de­ter­mine how to fix the health care cri­sis.

“Just give us a full-scale block grant, not only for money but for re­spon­si­bil­ity,” Wis­con­sin Gov. Scott Walker said. “Give the re­sources and the re­spon­si­bil­ity back to the states. That’s what our founders in­tended. It ac­tu­ally works. Oba­macare doesn’t work right now. It’s fail­ing most states in the na­tion.”

Walker and the other gov­er­nors on the panel, Eric Gre­it­ens of Mis­souri, Mary Fallin of Ok­la­homa, Doug Bur­gum of North Dakota and Phil Bryant of Mis­sis­sippi, shared hor­ror sto­ries of in­di­vid­ual buy­ers’ in­sur­ance pre­mi­ums soar­ing while cov­er­age de­te­ri­o­rated, par­tic­u­larly in ru­ral ar­eas.

Most of the 33 Repub­li­can gov­er­nors in the U.S. are in As­pen for an an­nual sum­mer con­fer­ence.

The In­sti­tute takes ad­van­tage of their pres­ence to in­vite a panel of gov­er­nors each year to dis­cuss the hot top­ics of the day as part of the McCloskey Speaker Se­ries.

There was no dis­cus­sion among the Repub­li­can gov­er­nors of the 20-plus mil­lion peo­ple na­tion­wide who gained health care cov­er­age un­der the Af­ford­able Health­care Act or how con­stituents in their states would be af­fected by pro­posed roll­backs in Med­i­caid cov­er­age.

Of the five states rep­re­sented on the panel, only North Dakota par­tic­i­pated in the Med­i­caid ex­pan­sion un­der the Af­ford­able Care Act. Mis­souri, Wis­con­sin, Ok­la­homa and Mis­sis­sippi are among the 19 states that did not ex­pand Med­i­caid cov­er­age.

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