WI Committee Approves Walker Plan To Drug Test Medicaid Recipients, Others

Republican presidential candidate Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker speaks during a town hall meeting Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
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Wisconsin’s budget committee on Thursday approved Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) proposal to make it the first state in the nation to require a drug test for Medicaid recipients, among other regulations.

The Joint Finance Committee approved the measure, and several others, to be included in the state’s budget this summer.

The committee also approved of Walker’s proposals to require drug tests for adults without dependents who receive food stamps and are applying for coverage with the state’s BadgerCare program, which aims to insure people ineligible for Medicaid, and his proposal to expand the state’s food stamp work requirement to include parents — but only to certain regions of the state at first, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

The paper noted that all of the proposals, including monthly premiums for childless adults enrolled in the state’s BadgerCare program, require federal approval.

Critics of drug testing for public programs say it does little to catch or deter drug use, nor to save tax dollars.

In 2012, an attempt to drug test welfare in Florida was found to have cost more than it saved in denied welfare funds to drug users — and that was before the costly lawsuits that followed.

A 2015 analysis from ThinkProgress found that tested welfare recipients used drugs at lower rates than the general population.

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Notable Replies

  1. Avatar for bkmn bkmn says:

    It’s the Republican way. Doesn’t matter if it was ineffective or ruled unconstitutional elsewhere, you just keep doing whatever you think is the way. This will cost Wisconsin a nice chunk of change defending a law that will probably be blocked by the courts and will screen out less than 1% of the recipients.

  2. Avatar for jc jc says:

    It’s all about the shaming, folks. All about the shaming. :disappointed:

  3. Avatar for pine pine says:

    I think Walker should be drug tested,for bringing up such a test,but.

    "In 2012, an attempt to drug test welfare in Florida was found to have cost more than it saved in denied welfare funds to drug users — and that was before the costly lawsuits that followed. "

    Make the applicants day,hope they sue the shite out of the state.

  4. I would check and see who owns the drug testing companies and how much they contributed to Walker.
    In Florida it was Rick Scott’s wife…
    This thing will never get through. Something about that piece of paper , I think they call it the Constitution

  5. This. Shaming, labeling, stigmatizing. It doesn’t matter what studies say because that’s irrelevant to the real purpose.

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