The Republican majority in the State Assembly today rubber stamped Scott Walker's atrocious piecemeal healthcare plan that falls short of guaranteeing insurance for Wisconsin's neediest citizens.
Walker manufactured a healthcare crisis in the state by rejecting a common-sense solution that would provide greater healthcare access for Wisconsin citizens at a lower cost to the state. Federal funding is still available to allow the state to cover 85,000 more people, create an estimated 10,000 jobs and save the state $86 million in this biennium alone by expanding Wisconsin's successful BadgerCare program.
Walker and Assembly Republicans claim they are offering a fix to a broken national healthcare model, but did very little to ensure that the program worked for Wisconsinites in the first place. In neighboring Minnesota, where the governor accepted funds to strengthen Medicaid and created a state-specific exchange, on average, rates are half of Wisconsinites are paying.
"This is a thinly veiled attempt by Scott Walker to court Tea Party extremists as he positions himself for a presidential run in 2016, " Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Mike Tate said Wednesday. "Today's special session was completely unnecessary. If Walker and Assembly Republicans really wanted to make the Affordable Care Act work for Wisconsin families they would accept the expansion funds that could insure 80,000 more people without spending a dime over the next two years."