States Continue Epic Struggle Over What The Health Law Means For Them
Minnesota GOP lawmakers are being criticized by their Democratic governor for how they are trying to create a health insurance exchange. Elsewhere, California insurance rates are increasing as the Supreme Court hears arguments on the health law and a pair of protests targets the health law and unions in Missouri.
(St. Paul) Pioneer Press: Dayton Criticizes GOP Health Insurance Exchange Efforts
As the U.S. Supreme Court began its historic review of the federal government's sweeping health care overhaul, the political debate in Minnesota over how to implement the law heated up at the state Capitol. Gov. Mark Dayton, a Democrat, sent a letter on Monday, March 26, criticizing Republican bills moving through the Legislature for taking a "piecemeal" and "ideological" approach to creating in Minnesota a health insurance exchange -- a key piece of the federal health care legislation. "Unfortunately, there are some who would rather play politics with this exchange in an election year, than work sincerely and cooperatively to advance it in Minnesota," Dayton wrote in the letter to Sen. Chris Gerlach, R-Apple Valley, and Rep. Joe Hoppe, R-Chaska (Snowbeck, 3/26).
MSNBC/Orange County Register: As High Court Takes Up Health Care, Calif. Insurers Raise Rates
Health insurance premiums for many Californians are set to increase as much as 20 percent in the coming weeks, according to insurance company reports to federal and state agencies. The rate increases come as U.S. Supreme Court starts hearing oral arguments Monday on the constitutionality of the federal Affordable Care Act, which became law March 23, 2010, although most provisions have not yet gone into effect. Also, Consumer Watchdog, funded by trial lawyers is trying to qualify an initiative for the state November ballot to mandate government approval of insurance premium hikes. The California HealthCare Foundation says that health insurance costs increased in 2011 for 38 percent of Californians (Norman, 3/27).
St. Louis Beacon: Competing Rallies Set For Jefferson City, To Protest Federal Health Care Law, Anti-Union Measures
Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder and state House Speaker Steve Tilley, R-Perryville, are among the scheduled speakers for the “Hands off My Health Care Rally,” to be held indoors. ... Meanwhile, Missouri’s labor leaders are planning for a massive afternoon rally outside the state Capitol to protest “an outrageous number of anti-worker issues currently being considered” by the Republican-controlled General Assembly (Mannies, 3/27).