UPTON: States should have Medicaid flexibility

Governors push back against Obamacare

Question of the Day

What has been the biggest debacle on Obama's watch?

View results

If states decline to expand Medicaid, the White House will have to rely exclusively on the more costly, federally subsidized exchanges as a way to offer coverage. Providing states the administrative flexibility to manage their Medicaid populations — including how and when to expand coverage — could help governors provide better quality health coverage to their low-income populations.

Enhanced state flexibility is one way to ameliorate some of the errors of Obamacare. On Dec. 4, 11 Republican governors wrote to President Obama requesting a meeting to discuss Medicaid. The governors proposed five “tenets of Medicaid reform,” including flexibility ideas and proposals to streamline funding and improve health outcomes. That letter, along with a follow-up request sent just last week, remains unanswered.

The White House has an opportunity to finally say “yes” to the legitimate and continuous requests from governors to run their Medicaid programs in a way that makes most sense. Moreover, governors have a chance to say “no” to a big part of Obamacare if Washington insists on attaching unreasonable and unworkable conditions. This is a moment of opportunity and leverage states should not waste.

Rep. Fred Upton, Michigan Republican, is chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

blog comments powered by Disqus
TWT Video Picks
You Might Also Like
  • Maureen McDonnell looks on as her husband, former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, made a statement on Tuesday after the couple was indicted on corruption charges. (associated press)

    PRUDEN: Where have the big-time grifters gone?

  • This photo taken Jan. 9, 2014,  shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gesturing as he answers a question during a news conference  at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Christie will propose extending the public school calendar and lengthening the school day in a speech he hopes will help him rebound from an apparent political payback scheme orchestrated by key aides. The early front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination will make a case Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, that children who spend more time in school graduate better prepared academically, according to excerpts of his State of the State address obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    BRUCE: Bombastic arrogance or humble determination? Chris Christie’s choice

  • ** FILE ** Secretary of State Hillary Rodham testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the deadly September attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    PRUDEN: The question to haunt the West

  • Get Breaking Alerts