LANSING (WWJ) – State Democrats are putting pressure on Republicans to cut short their summer vacations and come back to work.
Senate Democratic Leader Gretchen Whitmer says she and her colleagues will be at the Capitol on July 3 and ready to vote on a Medicaid expansion. Now she’s urging those on the other side of the aisle to do the same.
The bill would put 400,000 low-income workers on Medicaid.
Whitmer says the state is missing a chance at federal dollars.
“The Obama administration and the feds have made available additional dollars to cover people who are 130 percent of the poverty level, and make sure that they’re covered with Medicaid,” Whitmer said. “It’s preventative care, and it’s really an investment in the health of this particular population.”
This latest comes after Gov. Rick Snyder blasted lawmakers for going on vacation last week without taking a vote on the bill. Snyder says, that if the legislation fails, the state will see emergency rooms flooded with “hardworking people” forced to use the ER as their health care system.
“Take a vote, not a vacation,” an uncharacteristically angry Snyder said during a news conference Friday at the Capitol. “This is not about politics, this is about doing right … Please come do your job.”
The GOP has been resistant to expanding the Medicaid program under the federal health care law. Hospitals, insurers, small businesses and the poor are pushing the Senate to act, while conservative groups are pressuring senators to stand firm.
Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville said he needs more time to study the measure.