Thursday, June 27, 2013

Legislature in recess, a recap of the morning:

Partial Medicaid Authorization passed 93-23 after a very long morning of debate. For a recap, check here, where you can read our Twitter's play-by-play.

Two major amendments were voted down this morning that should lead to some very interesting issues in 2015.

The first was an amendment to allow for a state-run insurance exchange for Mississippi, instead of the current alternative, which will force Mississippi under the jurisdiction of a federally run exchange due to refusal. As Representative Baria pointed out while speaking for the amendment, the same people that oppose the Affordable Care Act for its federal "over-reach" have now essentially given control of the exchange up to the federal government (as opposed to Republican Insurance Commissioner, Mike Chaney). Also an issue, exchange tax breaks do not cover a large swath of Mississippi's counties, and many representatives voted to keep their own districts in the insurance darkness. A map of that, supplied on twitter by Rep. Baria, can be found here. Amendment 1 failed 54-65.

Amendment 2 related to Medicaid Expansion, which we have covered a bit more extensively. It was ruled not germane to the bill in question, and was therefore not voted upon, nor debated.

Amendment 3 was brought forth by Rep. Holland, adding a 1-year repealer to the Medicaid bill (it was left out in committee). Repealers are pretty regular in nature, and this was something that Holland suggested 'border[ed] on insanity." As we pointed out, "the danger in not having a repealer is that people can't contact their legislators for help on Medicaid ever again." Amendment 3 failed 65-55.

With these amendments disposed of, there will be two very serious votes that Representatives will have to explain away to their constituents (something the Democrats that spoke often reminded them).

The next round is coming up, with the Senate in session at 1:30, and the House coming back at 2:00.

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