Montana House Panel Halts Republican Sponsored Health Care Bill
The Montana Republicans proposed to set up a state regulated health insurance marketplace but the plan was stopped by a House committee last Wednesday. This shows that there’s division with regards to health care issues in the GOP, which controls both chambers of the Montana Legislature.
According to President Obama’s health care reform law, state-run health care exchanges provide people a choice of health care insurance plans, which has a range of pricing and coverage levels. Republican Representative Tom Berry introduced House Bill 620 as a compromise bill before the federal government’s system is implemented.
House Bill 620 was stopped in the House Business and Labor Committee with a 10-11 vote, with three Republicans voting for the measure. The Republicans leaders criticized Obama’s health care plan, which they say unfairly tax Montanans. Those who oppose the health care law ask the legislators to challenge the law in court.
Barry and other moderate Republicans in Montana didn’t think like their leaders and worked on a compromise that will set up a state regulated exchange if the federal health care plan is implemented.
Barry’s bill is what the Democrats asked for. It would enable the insurance companies with more power when it comes to the regulation of the exchange, which is what the Republicans want to be amended into the federal health care law. But this was not enough to sway the other Republicans from approving the bill.