Dem And GOP Guvs Write McConnell Urging Bipartisan Effort On Health Care

Kevin Clifford/FR159396 AP

A group of Democratic and Republican governors wrote Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) urging that efforts to improve the health care system be bipartisan in nature while reiterating their concerns with the House Obamacare repeal legislation, the American Health Care Act.

“While we certainly agree that reforms need to be made to our nation’s health care system, as Governors from both sides of the political aisle, we feel that true and lasting reforms are best approached by finding common ground in a bipartisan fashion,” the governors said.

Their letter Friday comes as McConnell and Senate Republicans are engaged in a partisan, secretive effort to dismantle the Affordable Care Act and appear to be seeking an approach similar to the House bill, with massive cuts to Medicaid and state waivers for some of Obamacare’s insurer mandates.

The House bill, the governors said Friday, “calls into question coverage for the vulnerable and fails to provide the necessary resources to ensure that no one is left out, while shifting significant costs to the states.”

“Medicaid provisions included in this bill are particularly problematic,” the letter continued.

The governors’ letter was signed by four Democrats — Govs. John Bel Edwards (LA), John Hickenlooper (CO) Steve Bullock (MT) and Tom Wolf (PA) — and three Republicans: Govs. John Kasich (OH), Charlie Baker (MA) and Brian Sandoval (NV) (pictured above). All of the governors besides Baker have at least one U.S. senator from their state who is a Republican.

Their letter goes on to outline four broad principles they’d encourage in health care reform, including improving affordability and providing state flexibility.

Before leaving town for the weekend on Thursday, some Republicans were still optimistic that they would be able to vote on their yet-to-be-revealed Obamacare repeal bill by a self-imposed July 4th deadline, though other said the timeline will likely have to move back to a vote by August.

Many rank-and-file Republicans have said they are still not completely sure what will be in the legislation and there has been no guarantee that the public would get more than a few days to review the bill before it comes up for a vote.

Read the full letter, via The Nevada Independent’s Jon Ralston, below:

Bipartisan Governors Letter to Senate Leadership by Jon Ralston on Scribd

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.
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