Corbett: No Medicaid Decision After Meeting with Sebelius

Tom Corbett portrait loresGov. Tom Corbett said he still has questions after meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. The two discussed the possibility of expanding Medicaid in Pa. under the Affordable Care Act.

“We had a meaningful discussion around increasing access to affordable, quality health care in a way that would lessen the burden on the state’s taxpayers in the long-term,” Corbett said. “I want to thank the secretary for her time and attention to our questions.”

The two met in Washington, DC Tuesday evening, after which federal officials pledged 100% funding for the hypothetical program’s first three years and at least 90% after that.

Corbett said he’d like more details about Arkansas and Tennessee, states which have utilized private insurers to expand coverage. He also wants to

“Until we know whether or not significant reform is possible, I continue to have concerns that Pennsylvania’s Medicaid program will be able to serve, in a sustainable manner, the approximately one in four Pennsylvanians that would be covered under a full expansion,” Corbett said.

Corbett’s decision over whether to opt Pennsylvania into the ACA, also called Obamacare, is being watched closely.

Democrats have loudly protested his decision to date not to expand the program, saying he risks federal funds that would allow low income Americans to join the program.

“There is no reasonable benefit to rejecting the Medicaid expansion plan; in fact, we should embrace the plan. It’s an unprecedented opportunity to help many folks who are in desperate need of health care and at the same time create jobs and receive federal funding. This should be a no-brainer,” state Sen. Mike Stack (D-Phila) said last month.

All of Corbett’s prospective Democratic challengers including Stack have joined in that criticism.

On the right, activists are just as fervently encouraging Corbett not to pursue the plan. They argue that the federal funds will drop off after a few years, leaving Pa. with a bill it won’t be able to afford.

Montgomery County Commissioner Bruce Castor, who has indicated he is considering a primary challenge to the Governor, is among those calling for Corbett to reject the plan – though he has expressed support for a private insurer-based option.

Other Republicans including some lawmakers have offered tentative support for the expansion.

The Governor’s press release read, “Corbett indicated that he will await further information from HHS and that no further decisions will be made at this time.”

15 Responses

  1. dr bob is saying that I,guzzardi, translated him correctly. The Tea Party Corbett flacks will abandon Corbett over Medicaid Expansion.

  2. First, Guzzardi names-names, invoking his personal knowledge of those in the TPM populating the Delaware Valley.

    Furthermore, what schisms may or may not exist among those on the “right” [within the three major policy realms of domestic/foreign/social]–noting, for example, that Teri/Don Adams have roots in School Choice from the 1990s–will be transcended if Corbett contravenes policy that GOP-CommitteePeople have espoused vigorously during recent years.

    Finally, the sentiments expressed by Guzzardi are correct, for these events are transpiring with sufficient lead-time so that those who may have wavered thus far regarding Castor’s potential candidacy [noting that no one else has dared to enter the fray, even provisionally] will be able to prepare themselves to organize party-level opposition to what would be widely-perceived as heresy.

  3. dr bob is saying that even the Independence Tea Party Association, Terri and Don Adams, the Kitchen Table Patriots, Ana Puig and Anastasia Przbylski as well as Dom Giordano all of whom have been flacking for Tom Corbett since his campaign will have to step away from him.

  4. The key-point, here, is that “The Bob” is not issuing a “threat”; rather, this reaction to news of what should have been reflex-refusal contradicts the heart of Republicanism [traditional and moderne].

    The “typical politician” may have to address concerns [raised extensively elsewhere on this website] regarding the risk of participation in the “Tom and Jerry Show” if Corbett doesn’t come-clean ASAP regarding allegedly-dilatory conduct [regarding both Penn State and Senate Republicans].

    But this transcends even “ethics,” for such a sellout would revulse even the members of the TPM who have acquiesced to the charms of cozying-up to Legacy-Republicans [you know who you are].

  5. dr bob is right. Expanding Medicaid means that Tom Corbett will not get past a primary with Bruce Castor who has taken a Rick Perry approach to further federal bankrupting fiscal encroachments on the state fisc.

  6. To those whom Bruce Castor would attract to an opposition-candidacy, any support for ObamaCare would be an incontrovertible “line in the sand” that Tom Corbett DARE not cross [contravening the “incumbency”-argument].

    The GOP [re-]learned [painfully] in ’12 of the inherent weakness of a POTUS-candidate who could not capitalize on the fervor in ’10 against socialized medicine [self-castrated by RomneyCare], which now threatens to be incarnated as CorbettCare.

    All bluster aside [evinced in the above-postings from obvious-D’s], if PA capitulates to DC [ignoring, for example, the warnings of Texas], unleashed will be the WRATH of far more people than those populating the TEA [Taxed Enough Already] Party Movement.

  7. To those whom Bruce Castor would attract to an opposition-candidacy, any support for ObamaCare would be an incontrovertible “line in the sand” that Tom Corbett DARE not cross [contravening the “incumbency”-argument].

    The GOP [re-]learned [painfully] in ’12 of the inherent weakness of a POTUS-candidate who could not capitalize on the fervor in ’10 against socialized medicine [self-castrated by RomneyCare].

    All bluster aside [evinced in the above-postings from obvious-D’s], if PA capitulates to DC [ignoring, for example, the warnings of Texas], unleashed will be the WRATH of far more people than those populating the TEA [Taxed Enough Already] Party Movement.

  8. To those whom Bruce Castor would attract to an opposition-candidacy, any support for ObamaCare would be an incontrovertible “line in the sand” that Tom Corbett DARE not cross.

    The GOP [re-]learned [painfully] in ’12 of the weakness in a POTUS-candidate who could not capitalize on the fervor in ’10 against socialized medicine [castrated by RomneyCare].

    All bluster aside [evinced in the above-postings from obvious-D’s], if PA capitulates to DC [ignoring, for example, the warnings of Texas], unleashed will be the WRATH of far more people than those populating the TEA [Taxed Enough Already] Party Movement.

  9. TNardi-

    I’m sure Kathleen Sebelius answered every question Corbett asked.

    However the questions Corbett didn’t ask are probably:
    1) How can I and my political cronies cash in on Medicaid to line our own pockets?

    2) How badly can I screw seniors before they actually vote me out of office?

  10. Corbett is on track to become the biggest failure in PA politics in the modern era!

  11. Tom Corbett never met a private option to a public problem that he didn’t like; especially if it lines his crony capitalist friends’ pockets. Say “bye-bye” in 2014, Tom.

  12. More Corbett double-talk and another in the long line of examples showing that the PAGOP is paralyzed by its fear of the Tea Party…while the Tea Party might have an impact upon a GOP Primary in this state, it has little to no value in statewide contests…hesitance by the Governor is further costing him any attempt to swing to the middle of the road…either way, Corbett is looking weak, impotent and more like “One Term Tom” every day.

  13. If he can’t get answers to his questions from the Secretary of HHS herself, maybe it’s his problem, not her’s.

  14. “Gov. Tom Corbett said he still has questions after meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.”

    Hmm…. I guess he should have asked those questions before he ended the meeting. 🙂

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