In what seems to be the start of an internal fight between the Florida Legislation and Governor Rick Scott kicked offed today. As previously posted Governor Rick Scott state last week that he would be moving ahead with the Medicaid Provision of the Affordable Care Act. His plan would help about 1 million individuals in Florida get Health care starting in 2014.
Rick Scott who’s about faced shocked republicans and Democrats alike in Florida suffered a major setback today. The House Committee which focuses on the Affordable Care Act rejected Rick Scotts proposal to expand Medicaid in Florida. The same committee on the Senate side decided to postpone considering the issue to a later date, the Senate Chairman J. Negron wanted more information before making a decision claiming he would “rather get it right, than make a hasty decision”
So what does this mean moving ahead?
It means there will definitely be a large fight brewing between the Governors office and the Legislative branch of Florida. The Florida legislature which is mostly republicans have been opposed to the Affordable Care Act since its inception, additionally the Governor launched his campaign on opposing the Affordable Care Act, and many thought he would not be expanding Medicaid until last weeks shocking turn of events.
The vote that took place today went straight down party lines. Members of the republican legislative party in Florida continues to claim that the state will run into a long term deficit when the Federal Government ceases to cover the Medicaid Expansion cost (Note The Affordable Care Act will cover 100% of the cost of Medicaid Expansion for the first 3 years, and 90% of the cost for the remainder years), while the Democrats in the State legislature called the vote “morally reprehensible” and claimed that politics was being played with the lives of individuals in the state.
There is a lot at stake with this decision, not only are we talking about the ability to ensure at least 1 million additional individuals, but we are also talking about millions of federal dollars that would be put into the Florida economy from the federal government, Hospital executives are pushing for the state to expand Medicaid. If the state legislature decides to go against the governor’s decision and not expand Medicaid the hospitals would lose the millions that would come as a secondly revenue stream from the Government, additionally Florida would loose a potential 54,000 new jobs that would be created.