Rep. Fisher: Blocking Medicaid expansion amounts to “cutting off your nose to spite your face” (video)

After passing through the NC Senate at breakneck speed last week, Senate Bill 4 will be before members of the House Health and Human Committee on Tuesday.

The legislation will block the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, preventing roughly 500,000 North Carolinians from getting health insurance.

While several Republican lawmakers have worried about the cost of implementing the federal healthcare program, Senate leader Phil Berger suggested on his campaign website that the Senate’s bill protects North Carolinians from “the government turning our health records over to the IRS; government-forced insurance; billions in new taxes.”

Rep. Susan Fisher is hopeful her colleagues in the NC House slow down and take a more thoughtful approach to discussing the merits of the Affordable Care Act.

The Buncombe County Democrat says some Senate Republicans determined to block Medicaid expansion are clearly angry President Obama won re-election:

“Who are the people who are going to suffer from this? It’s the elderly, the disabled, blind, children.  Where is the compassion?”

On Monday, a group of doctors also urged House lawmakers to support Medicaid expansion, which would be fully funded by the federal government for the first three years.

Fisher discussed Medicaid expansion, and efforts to slash unemployment benefits over the weekend on News and Views with Chris Fitzsimon. To hear an an excerpt from that interview, click below. To download a podcast of the entire segment with Rep. Fisher, visit the Radio Interview section of the N.C. Policy Watch website:

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2 Comments

  1. Barbara Lies

    February 12, 2013 at 7:50 am

    I think that it is not about compassion. Personally, I have seen so much abuse of the Medicaid system and the government’s inability to manage it. Something has to be done now. Government cannot keep funding a system that is out of control and dysfunctional. I resent officials who talk about the lack of compassion or any other excuse to continue such a program in its current state. Government needs to be lean and effective. Medicaid is the antithesis of this.

  2. david esmay

    February 12, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Barbara, I resent right wing nuts who hide behind screen names and tell lies. The two largest frauds committed within the system were perpetrated by companies controlled by Republiclown Rick Scott, the Florida Felon and Mitt Romney’s Damon Corp. Medicare and Medicaid have fewer instances of fraud thanks to aggressive oversight than private insurers do and they operate much more efficiently. Government programs have anywhere from 4-10% in overhead costs, while private insurers run at about 30-40%.