Pence promotes GOP health care bill in Florida

Vice President Mike Pence travelled to Florida as part of a continuing campaign to promote the Republican health care system overhaul.

“President Trump will give the American people the freedom to buy health insurance across state lines, the way you buy life insurance or car insurance,” he said.

The former Indiana governor appeared in front of dozens of supporters in the warehouse of a Jacksonville envelope supply company.

“Virtually every promise they made about Obamacare when it was passed into law has been broken,” he said.

The Republican healthcare plan would undo much of the health care law passed under President Barack Obama, including Medicaid expansion and the imposition of tax penalties for people who don’t buy insurance.

So far the GOP’s bill has been met with opposition—some of it from the party’s own members.

Seeking to drum up new support, Trump on Friday agreed to new Medicaid curbs that appeased some House Republicans. On Saturday, Pence urged House Republicans like Rep. John Rutherford of Florida, who introduced the speakers, to keep fighting for repeal. He also sought to calm supporters’ concerns about the effort.

Pence highlighted an amendment to the current GOP bill that would create an option of Medicaid block grants for states who want them.

“We’re going to give states the options of block grants to Medicaid to the states, so states like Florida can innovate and design Medicaid around the unique needs of the people in this community,” Pence said.

“And we’re going to allow states like Florida to include a work-requirement for able-bodied adults, ensuring that Medicaid’s benefits are available for those who need them most.”

“We’re going to have an orderly transition to a better health care system in America that makes affordable, high-quality insurance available to everybody,” he said.

Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott, who appeared with Pence, on Friday asked the Trump administration for Medicaid block grants to replace the current system.

But many health care professionals say capping Medicaid funding in block grants would instead hurt access to quality health care for the poor, children and the elderly by cutting the amount of federal dollars available.

(AP)

 
 
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