Thursday, October 25

SCHIP Sailing Again

In a move that is likely to put more pressure on Republicans in Congress and the White House, the NY Times reports:

Sensing a political advantage, Democrats rushed Wednesday to move a health care bill for children back to the House floor, having made minor changes to win over more Republicans.
Nancy Pelosi said the House would vote Thursday on the new bill. Like the original, which President Bush vetoed three weeks ago, it would cover 10 million children through the State Children’s Health Insurance Program and increase spending on the program by $35 billion, for a total of $60 billion, in the next five years.

But the new bill would tighten eligibility for the program, generally barring the use of federal money to cover illegal immigrants, childless adults and children of families with incomes exceeding three times the poverty level: $61,950 for a family of four.

“The bill addresses all of the concerns that were expressed by our colleagues and by the president,” Ms. Pelosi said. “We hope the Republicans will take yes for an answer.”
Representative Fred Upton, Republican of Michigan, said the changes would improve the bill and would pick up some Republican votes.

Mr. Upton was among 44 Republicans who voted last week to override the president’s veto of the earlier measure. Supporters fell 13 votes short of the number needed to override in the House. The bill had passed in the Senate with more than the two-thirds majority needed to override. More

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