By Sam Baker - 10/24/11 08:51 PM EDT
Republican governors on Monday urged the congressional supercommittee to consider major changes to Medicaid, but not the cuts in federal spending that President Obama has proposed.
The Republican Governors Association said in a letter to the supercommittee that Obama’s proposal would simply shift costs to the states. Democratic governors also oppose Obama’s plan, for the same reason.
Obama has proposed combining various rates of federal Medicaid funding into a single percentage for each state. That would save the federal government about $100 billion, but governors say those savings would come at states’ expense.
“We are willing to do our share to save federal Medicaid dollars, but let us do it in a way that will reduce state taxpayer cost, too,” the RGA said in its letter to the supercommittee.
Republican governors want the supercommittee to give states more control over their Medicaid programs. The RGA has presented a list of options that would give states more power over their Medicaid rolls and how they pay doctors. It also supports repealing a provision of the healthcare reform law that prevents states from cutting Medicaid eligibility before 2014.