Lawmakers halt prohibition of Medicaid expansion in late move to restore public policy

Published: Wednesday, March 13 2013 10:29 p.m. MDT

"This is a no-brainer," she said. "This is something we need to do."

Weiler said 95 percent of communication from constituents and those who have testified in numerous past public hearings on the matter has been in favor of Medicaid expansion.

"This is a very important decision," he said. "If the state of Utah expands Medicaid, we are going to upset tens of thousands of people. And if we don't expand Medicaid, we are going to upset tens of thousands of people."

Weiler worked with other lawmakers to craft the substitute bill, as well as representatives within the governor's office. He said Utah shouldn't tie its hands "while the landscape is still shifting" on health care reform.

States are still working deals and making compromises with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on various aspects of the health care law.

When Senate President Wayne Neiderhauser, R-Sandy, sent the bill to the House, he said, "Congratulations, Rep. Anderegg. You are now the proud sponsor of one of the most important bills of the session."

The House passed the bill back to the Senate for a signature of approval. Anderegg said he thinks it is a good compromise.

E-mail: wleonard@deseretnews.com

Twitter: wendyleonards

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