“I am glad to see House Bill 4714 to expand Medicaid to include more than 400,000 working Michiganders voted out of the Senate Government Operations Committee. I am hopeful that Senate members will keep the momentum going and act quickly to send this bill back to the House. While this Senate version is far from perfect, it is a good start and there is a much better option for Michigan workers and families than the three other Senate bills voted out today. Senate Bill 422, sponsored by Sen. Bruce Caswell, and Senate bills 459 and 460, sponsored by Sen. Patrick Colbeck, unrealistically expect low-wage workers to be able to afford high deductible health insurance or Health Savings Accounts. Moving those three Senate bills out of committee muddies the water and could delay a vote on Medicaid expansion as legislators try to sort out the radical and unworkable changes proposed for health care in them.

“We all agree on the ultimate goal: providing affordable health care for working low-income men, women and children; empowering small businesses to succeed; and reducing unnecessary emergency room visits and uncompensated care that everyone ends up paying for through higher health care premiums. As we wait for the final vote on HB 4714 in the Senate, which Sen. Randy Richardville has said should happen on Aug. 27, I hope that the senators will keep these goals in mind. My Democratic colleagues and I are ready to get back to work on the Senate version of HB 4714 so that we can keep the process moving and get a reasonable bill to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk for his signature.”