Calif. GOP Lawmakers Work To Educate Constituents About ACA
Republican lawmakers in California are working to educate their constituents about the state's health insurance exchange under the Affordable Care Act, regardless of whether they agree with the law, the Sacramento Bee reports.
Informational meetings to help residents navigate Covered California's online marketplace have been held by several state GOP lawmakers, including:
- Sen. Anthony Cannella (Ceres);
- Assembly member Dan Logue (Marysville);
- Assembly member Brian Nestande (Palm Desert); and
- Assembly member Don Wagner (Irvine).
Comments From GOP Lawmakers
Wagner said that the ACA is "the law of the land" and that any opportunity to overturn it was lost after President Obama was reelected.
"My job as a state representative is not to try to thwart the federal law and throw monkey wrenches into it," Wagner said, adding, "My job, given the unfortunate federal circumstance, is to make it as good as humanly possible for my constituents."
Cannella said it is the responsibility of elected officials "to get that information out there." He said, "We should be having these town halls everywhere."
Nestande added that Republicans' "argument is really with the federal policy, not necessarily with the state's role."
Reaction From Political Strategists
Democratic strategist Bill Carrick said the informational sessions give Republican lawmakers "a positive response and a positive way of dealing with all of the questions."
He added that GOP lawmakers holding such sessions likely will not face much backlash from more conservative voters during the next election.
Wayne Johnson, a GOP consultant, said it makes sense for state lawmakers to help residents in their districts, even while not agreeing with the law.
"When something is the law, you are not going to be an obstructionist in such a way that it harms your constituents," Johnson said (Cadelago, Sacramento Bee, 10/11).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.