LANSING, MI (WTVB) - Republican State Representative Ken Kurtz of Coldwater voted against it, but the Michigan House last night approved a Medicaid expansion bill that democrats say will bring federally subsidized healthcare coverage to about 300-thousand low income workers in Michigan. Republicans say it has been modified with enough safeguards to protect the state budget and hold residents responsible for their own health.
G-O-P Sponsor Matt Lori of Constantine says it’s the right thing to do, adding that the only way we’re going to save taxpayers money, and it’s a universally agreed upon concept, is to have a healthy Michigan population. As Lori put it, healthy people equal taxpayer savings. It expands coverage to residents earning up to 133% of the poverty level. Because it is part of the Obama Administration’s Affordable Care Act, it also drew threats from tea party activists that any Republican who voted for it would face a primary challenge next August.
Half the House’s republicans voted for it half opposed it. It was nearly unanimous democratic support that put it over the top. The measure now heads over to the Michigan Senate.