Perry continues fight against Obama's health care plan

July 11, 2012 4:29:00 PM PDT
Just weeks after the Supreme Court upheld the key component of the so-called Obamacare, the U.S. House of Representatives lawmakers have again voted to repeal it.

It's the 33rd time the House has voted to scrap parts of the health care plan. It is not likely to even be voted on in the Senate.

Here at home, Gov. Rick Perry promises to keep at least one aspect of the plan from taking hold in Texas. But how will he make it work without hurting those who need health care the most?

Gov. Perry clearly thinks the House did the right thing. He's said for months that he wanted the law repealed, and this week announced that if he gets his way, Texas won't expand its Medicaid rolls either.

But we wanted to know more.

At a campaign rally on Wednesday afternoon for U.S. House candidate Randy Weber in League City, Gov. Perry continued to hit hard on the federal health care reform and a plan that would put 1.4 million low-income Texans onto Medicaid.

Perry told Eyewitness News that Texas can do it better on our own.

"We as a state will come up with a better solution than Washington will," Perry said.

The governor says allowing a federal expansion of Medicaid to insure all those uninsured Texans is spending money Texas and the United States doesn't have on a plan he says doesn't work. But he doesn't have the details of an alternative yet.

"Where's the plan, if we're not going to take Obama's plan?" we asked Perry.

"It's called block granting," he said.

"But who's eligible for that?" we asked.

"Trying to sit here and craft a solution in a five-minute interview is impossible," he replied.

Perry does admit the state needs to do something with our highest-in-the-nation levels of uninsured and mentioned he wants some of them to take some control of their situation -- possibly paying for some of their coverage themselves, a component President Obama's Medicaid plan doesn't offer.

"Does it mean insurance, does it mean something else, I don't know, it's worth having the conversation. But the idea that we're going to expand what we know is a failed economic program, we're not going to do it in the state of Texas," Perry said.

Perry is talking with health care leaders across Texas to get their ideas.

On Wednesday, Democratic Houston area State Rep. Garnet Coleman said he doesn't agree with Perry's move and may work a plan to force the governor make uncomfortable choices in the budget to keep his Medicaid ban when lawmakers go back to work in January.


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