Mitch Daniels and the Affordable Care Act
“Mitch Daniels’s record also bears similarities to Obama’s, and his approach to Obamacare as governor has been an anchor on the repeal movement.” –National Review, 03/04/11
MITCH DANIELS vs. TEA PARTY GOVERNORS
Did they refuse federal funding?
Unlike Many Tea Partiers, Daniels Isn’t Refusing Federal Funding. Many Tea Party members – including Governors Perry, Scott and Jindal – are advocating for refusing federal funding. Daniels has not taken this position and is accepting Affordable Care Act benefits for Indiana – “Congress approved health care reform and the president signed it into law. Gov. Daniels does not agree with it, but Indiana will seek funds that help Hoosiers when there are no complicated strings or costs attached,” said press secretary Jane Jankowski.” [Huffington Post, 08/31/10]
Did they reject HHS grants?
Unlike Many Tea Partiers, Daniels Is Accepting HHS Grants. Many Tea Party members – including Governors Perry, Scott and Jindal – have called for refusing, and have refused, to accept grants from HHS to help implement the Affordable Care Act. Governor Daniels has already accepted $35.7 million. [Department of Health and Human Services, accessed 05/18/11]
Did they refuse exchanges?
Unlike Many Tea Partiers Daniels is Creating an Exchange. Many Tea Party members – including Governors Perry, Scott and Jindal – have called for refusing, and have refused to create state insurance exchanges for the Affordable Care Act. Governor Daniels has ordered his administration to establish and operate an exchange. [NWI Times, 01/15/11]
GOVERNOR DANIELS by the numbers
Annual income for Indiana families to enroll. $13,000 more than what federal program requires
Adult Medicaid enrollment increase under Gov. Daniels
Additional Hoosiers enrolled in Indiana’s health program
Mitch Daniels Isn’t As Extreme on Repealing the Affordable Care Act as Many Tea Partiers. As explained by Michael Cannon in National Review Online:
- Meanwhile, Daniels is stunting both the momentum for repeal of Obamacare and his credibility as a standard-bearer for it. Indiana was party to a lawsuit in which a federal judge declared the entire law unconstitutional and void. That court order relieved Daniels of any obligations Obamacare creates. Shortly after that ruling, however, Daniels orchestrated a letter co-signed by 20 other governors suggesting “improvements” that they would like to see before implementing their own Obamacare bureaucracies. [National Review, 03/04/11]
- Daniels’s decision to accept Obamacare funds and move forward with implementation is further undermining the repeal effort. Yesterday, federal judge Roger Vinson reversed his initial order forbidding the Obama administration to implement the law. He did so in part because plaintiff states such as Indiana are implementing it, which he said “undercut” their own argument that he should block it. [National Review, 03/04/11]
Like Mitt Romney in Massachusetts, Many Elements of Daniels Health Care Plan in IN are Similar to the Affordable Care Act. As explained by Michael Cannon in National Review Online:
- But Mitch Daniels’s record also bears similarities to Obama’s, and his approach to Obamacare as governor has been an anchor on the repeal movement. Like Obama, Daniels increased cigarette taxes to expand government-run health care. Whereas Obamacare requires states to open their Medicaid programs to families of four earning $31,000 (138 percent of the federal poverty level), Daniels expanded Indiana’s Medicaid program to families of four earning $44,000 (200 percent of poverty). From 2008 to 2010, Indiana’s Medicaid enrollment spiked: Adult enrollments grew 21 percent, a rate nearly double the national average. By 2010, Daniels had enrolled another 62,000 Hoosiers in government-run health care. [National Review, 03/04/11]
- Daniels and his conservative fans make much of the fact that this “Healthy Indiana Plan” (HIP) offers high-deductible coverage combined with a taxpayer-funded health savings account, whereas Obamacare simply expands traditional Medicaid with its notoriously lousy access to care. But that’s just another way of saying Daniels made Medicaid more attractive: Under his plan, the government hands out coverage plus something a lot like cash. Conservatives should not consider it a selling point, then, that 94 percent of HIP enrollees are satisfied with the program, or that HIP enjoys a much higher retention rate than the regular Medicaid program, or that HIP’s waiting list is now 50,000 Hoosiers long. Health savings accounts are supposed to reduce dependence on government. Daniels is using HSAs to expand dependence on government. [National Review, 03/04/11]