Legislative leaders applaud bold initiative.
With a looming amendment to Oklahoma's ballooning constitution, Governor Stitt went to Washington to join with President Trump in seeking better ways to bring equitable funding to all states without the mandates of ObamaCare. The move brought immediate reaction for Speaker Charles McCall and other lawmakers who are focusing on the matter, and seeking a way to better provide for the truly destitute with the same federal funding levels that other states enjoy.
Current formulas only give Oklahoma about 62% reimbursement, while states with expanded medicaid enjoy better than 90%. It's akin to being able to buy a Cadillac Escalade for less money (out-of-pocket) than a Dodge Caravan.
Chairman Marcus McIntire joined with Speaker McCall in celebrating this new option. While guarded in his reaction, McIntire did acknowledge that this potential option will grant the state far more latitude in addressing unique needs in Oklahoma.
OKLAHOMA CITY – House Speaker Charles McCall, R-Atoka, issued the following statement today on Governor Kevin Stitt’s SoonerCare 2.0 announcement:
“This is a far better plan than putting Obamacare in the Constitution with no flexibility. Our Caucus appreciates Governor Stitt’s strong leadership working with the Trump administration to bring federal dollars back to Oklahoma. We will promptly discuss the governor’s plan as a Caucus and seek input from the entire Legislature upon session convening next week.
When states can work with the federal administration, outcomes for citizens are always better. This opportunity to work hand in hand with the federal administration on a plan it has endorsed will make our citizens healthier. The governor’s plan gives Oklahoma the flexibility to put our citizens’ health first, while the state question puts stringent federal Obamacare requirements first, to the detriment of innovation and health outcomes.
At first glance, the governor’s plan swiftly brings our federal dollars home to help Oklahomans in a far more responsible fashion than the state question. It also has responsible funding mechanisms, which the state question does not. The state question forces the Obamacare federal model upon states, and the Trump-Stitt plan puts states in charge of their own healthcare and health outcomes. We will discuss more details in the coming days, but it is a highly promising plan.”
Rep. Marcus McEntire, R-Duncan, co-chair of the legislative Healthcare Working Group and chair of the House Appropriations & Budget Subcommittee on Health, issued the following statement:
“At first blush of seeing this plan, I’m optimistic. It does increase access to care and captures our tax dollars and brings them back home. It also gives the state unprecedented flexibility in designing and administering Medicaid without raising taxes on Oklahoma citizens or raiding dollars from other core areas of service.”