Senator Rockefeller Writes Against Repeal of the Stability Protections – Say Ahhh! A Children’s Health Policy Blog

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and Jocelyn Guyer

Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) sent a letter to
his colleague Senator Hatch (R-UT) last week outlining his grave concerns about
Hatch’s recently introduced bill to repeal the stability protections
(“or maintenance-of-effort requirement”) in Medicaid and CHIP.   The letter — the latest in a
series of Rockefeller efforts to protect health programs for low-income people in
the deficit reduction debate — expresses deep concern about 400,000 people
losing Medicaid and CHIP if the Hatch bill is adopted, 2/3rds of whom would be
children.  It reviews the long
history of bipartisan support for CHIP and its incredible success, along with
its companion Medicaid, in driving down the rate of uninsured children to the
lowest level on record.  

On a more
personal note, Senator Rockefeller expresses surprise that Senator Hatch, a
leader on CHIP in the past, “would seek to advance a provision that would
jeopardize the future of the Children’s Health Insurance Program.” 

If you’re a regular reader of Say Ahhh!, I’m sure we
don’t have to tell you that we agree with Senator Rockefeller’s assessment that
repealing the stability protections would create enormous issues for the
nation’s children.  As he put it,
“By repealing these provisions, this bill could jeopardize the country’s
remarkable progress in covering children and unravel one of the Congress’s most
successful bi-partisan initiatives.”

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