02 August 2007

They Voted For You: Health Care

U.S. Reps. Alan Mollohan, D-1st, Shelley Moore Capito, R-2nd, and Nick Rahall, D-3rd, all voted to pass the "Children’s Health and Medicare Protection Act of 2007" Wednesday.

As The Associated Press observes, the legislation is one of two measures that would expand the State Children's Health Insurance Program, which has become a significant source of coverage in most states, including West Virginia.

One measure, up for a Senate vote today, would expand the program by $35 billion, the AP article said.

What passed Wednesday, the AP explains, "the more ambitious House legislation, a $50 billion SCHIP expansion paid for in part by slashing government payments to Medicare HMOs, attracted only five Republican votes, while 10 Democrats crossed party lines to oppose it."

The vote on passage was 225-204.

AP also reports that "Both measures face a veto-threat from President Bush, who says they would cost too much and expand the decade-old program beyond its original mission, inappropriately moving toward government-run health care."

Both versions of the bill would be financed in part by a hefty increase in taxes on tobacco products," the article notes further.

Offering a local perspective, The Herald-Dispatch of Huntington interviewed West Virginia doctors to get their take on the pros and cons of CHIP.

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