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Rubio Weighs In On Repeal And Replace Efforts

Four years after Russian efforts to sow division in the U.S., Rubio warned: "I’m not sure that we’re any less vulnerable than we once were."
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Senator Marco Rubio says it’s not fair to financially punish states like Florida that did not expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Rubio was tweeting about the latest proposal to repeal and replace Obamacare. He said he likes increased funding for hospitals that see large percentages of Medicaid patients, known as an increase in disproportionate share money.

But the big sticking point may be Medicaid funding – Florida’s funding per Medicaid enrollee is already low, and locking those low rates in would essentially punish Florida for not expanding Medicaid under Obamacare.

Before the latest version of the bill was released, Rubio said during a Facebook live that some of the press reports about Medicaid cuts are overblown.
“They make it sound like the less money spent on Medicaid, the less coverage people are going to get for mandatory service or mandatory eligibility,” Rubio said. “Now it could hurt, I’ll admit that, if there’s not enough money, than the reimbursement to providers will go down.”

Rubio said he plans to vote for it to proceed next week.

“Unless you’re on the bill, you can’t change it,” Rubio said. “If there’s anything about it you don’t like, the only way to change it is through an amendment with a vote on the senate floor. You can’t even start that process unless you vote to proceed. So I’m prepared to vote to proceed next week so we can get on the bill and begin to make those changes.”

Senator Bill Nelson, like all Senate Democrats, is against the bill. Check here for a breakdown of the new bill.

Health News Florida reporter Abe Aboraya works for WMFE in Orlando. He started writing for newspapers in high school. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe worked as a reporter for the Orlando Business Journal. He comes from a family of health care workers.