White House Responds to Feinstein Concerns About Medicaid Cuts
On Monday, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs pointed out that the federal economic stimulus package has provided "over $3 billion in increased Medicaid payments just to the state of California," Roll Call reports.
The comment came in response to an observation from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) suggesting that proposals to change federal Medicaid funding formulas to cover the cost of health care reform could hurt California (Koffler, Roll Call, 6/22).
Speaking on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday, Feinstein said, "If you change the Medicaid rate, for example, it has an impact on California between $1 billion and $5 billion a year. Now, how could I support that? Because it would take down the state" (Drucker, Roll Call, 6/21).
Gibbs said he was not asserting a position on including Medicaid cuts in health care reform legislation, saying, "It's not up to me to sort of negotiate one way or another on that aspect of the bill" (Roll Call, 6/22).On Sunday, Feinstein also questioned the prospects for passing reform legislation this year. She said, "To be candid with you, I don't know that [President Obama] has the votes right now. I think there's a lot of concern in the Democratic caucus" (Roll Call, 6/21). 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.