California Leaders Applaud Medicaid House Vote
On a 349-62 vote, the House voted to approve legislation (HR 5613) that would place a one-year moratorium on seven new Medicaid regulations proposed by President Bush.
California officials estimate the rules would cost the state $12 billion over five years. That's on top of the state budget cuts that Medi-Cal is facing.
Given the state's worsening budget outlook, it's not surprising that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) urged the state's congressional delegation to support the bill. Forty-five California representatives lined up behind the measure, while four opposed it and three didn't vote.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Schwarzenegger applauded the veto-proof vote in the House and urged President Bush to reconsider his opposition to the bill.
"The president should see this strong vote as a sign that he needs to put down his veto pen and work with the Congress to protect Medicaid,'' Pelosi said. "The Bush administration's proposed Medicaid regulations would leave more Americans without the health care they need in a time of economic uncertainty,'' Pelosi said.
The bill now moves to the Senate, where a two-thirds majority also would be needed to override President Bush's promised veto -- something that has happened only once during his time in office.
While things shake out on Capitol Hill, here's a look at how some health care measures are faring in Sacramento.