Governor To Pitch Health Plan at State GOP Convention
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) on Friday night is expected to promote his health care reform proposal during his address at the California Republican Party Convention, the Contra Costa Times reports. The governor's proposal has met heavy criticism from Republicans (Sheppard, Contra Costa Times, 2/9).
A provision in the governor's proposal to require contributions from businesses, physicians and hospitals has been labeled as a tax increase by Republicans, who accuse Schwarzenegger of breaking his pledge never to raise taxes.
Sen. Tom McClintock (R-Thousand Oaks) said, "I will never trust another word [the governor] says" (Yamamura, Sacramento Bee, 2/9).
If the contributions are considered a tax, the proposal would require two-thirds approval in the Legislature, likely making it possible for Republican opponents to block its passage.
However, Schwarzenegger and Democratic lawmakers say the proposed contributions are fees, not taxes, because they would be reused to pay for health coverage (California Healthline, 1/9).
The governor says that criticism over the provision is "curriculum talk" better left to lawmakers (California Healthline, 1/26).
Republicans also have stated their opposition to elements of the plan that would provide health insurance to children of undocumented immigrants (Sheppard, Los Angeles Daily News, 2/8).