Calif. Senate Panel Rejects Bill To Put Health Changes to a Vote
On Wednesday, the California Senate Health Committee voted along party lines to defeat a bill (SCA 29) that would have amended the state Constitution to require voter approval before any state or federal health care legislation could take effect, the AP/Ventura County Star reports.Â
Only the three Republican members of the nine-member panel voted in support of the bill. The bill would have applied to the new federal health reform law, as well as any state health care overhaul plans.
Sen. Tony Strickland (R-Thousand Oaks), author of the bill, argued that voters should have a say in health care overhaul because the changes are personal and potentially costly for residents. Strickland is running for state controller in June's Republican primary.
Opponents of the bill said that voters already have a part in the process by electing the lawmakers who craft health care legislation. Democrats also noted that the state's referendum process allows voters to challenge decisions made by the Legislature.
Strickland has said that if his legislation failed in the Legislature, he would launch an independent initiative to put the issue on a future ballot (Hindery, AP/Ventura County Star, 5/5).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.