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Schwartz Slams Corbett Obamacare Decision

Round one?

Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, who is exploring a 2014 bid for Governor, harshly criticized Tom Corbett’s decision not to establish a state-based health insurance exchange.

A key component of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, the exchange will now be set up by the federal government.

“Governor Corbett’s decision not to accept the authority to develop and operate a state ‘exchange’ marketplace of private health coverage for individuals and small businesses is a failure of leadership and vision,” she said. “It is a lost opportunity for the Commonwealth to demonstrate leadership and innovation in affordability and accessibility in the insurance marketplace.”

Corbett cited a lack of details from President Obama’s administration as the chief reason for his decision.

“While there are unanswered questions, as there are with all new ventures, the Governor’s decision demonstrates the low priority he has given to the serious challenge of affordable, accessible health coverage for our citizens,” Schwartz (D-Montco) concluded.

Health care policy is Schwartz’s wheelhouse. But she, too, has objected to an important element of Obamacare: the Independent Payment Advisory Board. It’s a key part of the health care law’s price structure, but it would reduce reimbursement rates for medical facilities – one of Schwartz’s key constituencies.

Update: John Hanger, the former DEP Secretary who has already launched his bid for Gov, also criticized Corbett’s decision. Here’s his statement:

Tom Corbett isn’t earning his salary by outsourcing Pennsylvanian’s health care interests to the federal government. This is yet another example of the governor’s failed leadership.

Other Republican governors have decided to create the exchanges to better insure the program will meet the needs of their citizens. Republican Governor Butch Otter of Idaho said he would rather be at the table so Idahoans would not “be at the federal government’s mercy in how that exchange is designed and run..”

Pennsylvania needs strong leadership in this vital area to make sure our citizens get the best possible health care system. They’re not going to get it from Tom Corbett.

And the Pa. Democratic Party criticized the Governor over the fact that the conservative group Americans for Prosperity issued a release on the Governor 20 minutes before Corbett’s office did.

“How did Americans for Prosperity Americans for Prosperity know about Gov. Corbett’s decision before it was announced to the public?” asked Pa. Democratic Party Chairman Jim Burn. “Americans for Prosperity is a special interest group backed by the infamous Koch brothers. They have long lobbied for policies that help corporate special interests at the expense of Pennsylvania families, but somehow they knew about Gov. Corbett’s decision well before the announcement was public. It raises serious questions.”

AFP Pa. state Director Jennifer Stefano said the release was anticipatory, based on the fact that the deadline was Friday and the group expected – rather than knew – that Corbett would decline. PoliticsPA is seeking a copy of the original release.

12 Responses

  1. Obviously the low-informed voters are out in full force based on these posts. Corbett should pray Allyson Schwartz challenges him. He would win in a landslide. Schwartz and Fattah have never seen a spending bill they didn’t cheer on.

  2. Observer is exactly right. Elections have consequences, and Corbett refuses to read the writing on the wall. His fealty to Americans for Prosperity vastly outweighs his concern for the citizens of Pennsylvania, as he proved with his hasty, repressive Voter ID law. Looking forward to voting him out of office and voting in someone who puts Pennsylvanians ahead of the Koch brothers.

  3. Since Gov. Corbett thinks so little of the Commonwealth’s ability to set up a healthcare system, he should go ahead and give up his own state health insurance plan. Let’s see him try his luck in the private insurance market.

  4. A couple of the idiot commenters above apparently don’t grasp the simple notion that because Corbett declined, the Federal Government will instead manage the PA exchange – it’s going to happen anyway, but local businesses and governments will have no input into which plans are offered and for how much. Corbett is just a serf for the Koch Brothers’ dominion. If he cared about PA, he would have kept the business in the state, instead of outsourcing it to to Washington.

  5. electedface, what does any of that have to do with Obama care? Although I LOVED every word of it! Also enjoyed the video link. Thanks

    Hope Sid is right.

  6. With all the wild spending of the Obama administration, Tom Corbett knows that an insurance-exchange will bankrupt the state of Pennsylvania. Therefore. by denying it he is trying to keep his state solvent rather than going bankrupt. His duty is to to what’s best for his citizens. And, he made the right decision

  7. I am not a Corbett supporter but since Schwartz voted for it what else can she say. My question to Schwartz is How are we going to pay for it??? Can she write us a check??

  8. Yep, she’s running. Her statement starts with Corbett’s “failure of leadership and vision” and the “low priority” he places on healthcare.

  9. Nothing surprises me about Tom Corbett anymore. If he will outsource the state lottery, he will stop at nothing to pare government down to subsistence level. With such a great political tradition in PA, how do we get stuck with amoral right-wingers like Corbett and Toomey???

  10. As Attorney General, Tom Corbett received over $647,000 in campaign contributions from members of the Second Mile Foundation, while only assigning one investigator to the case.

    Meanwhile, at the same time, he assigned 14 investigators to Bill Deweese, who spent more than 5 years trying to get him.

    It is difficult to believe these campaign contributions did not improperly influence his decision to not file charges against Jerry Sandusky.

    The state police trooper who initially handled the Clinton County case against Jerry Sandusky believed there was enough evidence from a teenage boy — now known as Victim One– to charge Sandusky with indecent assault.

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