September 22, 2017


Sununu praises, then disavows Graham-Cassidy bill to replace Obamacare (ETHAN DEWITT, September 18, 2017, Concord Monitor)

Gov. Chris Sununu disavowed a last-ditch federal bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act Monday, praising provisions that would introduce block-grant funds to states but distancing himself from vast Medicaid cuts included in the legislation.

The bill, proposed by Republican Sens. Lindsay Graham and Bill Cassidy, would dramatically overhaul the U.S. health care system, replacing Affordable Care Act tax subsidies with a state-by-state grant system and making deep reductions to Medicaid and Medicare. 

In a statement Monday, Sununu -- who has worked with other Republican governors to ensure state control -- said the cuts in the present plan would go too far.

"While I continue to strongly believe that Obamacare must be reformed, it must be replaced with something that works for New Hampshire," Sununu said, referring to the Affordable Care Act introduced by President Barack Obama.

Sununu added that the Graham-Cassidy bill would deprive the Granite State of $1 billion in Medicaid funding during a phase out between 2020 and 2026, citing a figure by the N.H. Department of Health and Human Services.

That "down-shifting," he said, could create "general fund liabilities" that would threaten New Hampshire's tradition of not having an income or sales tax.  

The key states that would lose funding under Graham-Cassidy (Caitlin Owens, 9/22/17, Axios)

A new estimate obtained by Axios from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) projects that Alaska, home to key swing vote Sen. Lisa Murkowski, would lose 38% of federal funding for premium subsidies and Medicaid by 2026 under the Graham-Cassidy proposal. John McCain's home state of Arizona would also lose funding (-9% in 2026). [...]

Other estimates: Ohio (-18% by 2026), West Virginia (-23%) and Colorado (-24%), all home to senators who are under pressure over health care, would also lose funding. Sen. Susan Collins' state of Maine would gain 44% by 2026.

Posted by at September 22, 2017 8:41 AM