New Jersey Governor Refuses To Obey New Kids’ Insurance Limits
In a letter to President Bush and HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt, New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine (D) said the state would sue the Bush administration over new rules that limit enrollment in the State Children's Health Insurance Program, the Washington Post reports.
According to the Post, the rules have been characterized as "unfair and overreaching by children's advocates and politicians of both parties," but Corzine's letter "marks the first time a governor has openly vowed to defy them." Corzine in the letter wrote that FamilyCare, the state's version of SCHIP, "will continue to provide health care to children in families with incomes up to 350%" of the poverty level.
White House spokesperson Tony Fratto said, "New Jersey is free to use its own funds to cover children who are not eligible under the federal guidelines," adding, "It's premature to say what CMS would do if they are not in compliance. ... We hope that New Jersey would focus on the core mission of this program" (Lee, Washington Post, 9/14).