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  • Backgrounder posted May 3, 2010 by Dennis G. Smith Facing Obamacare: What the States Should Do Now

    Abstract: The sweeping health care bill pushed by congressional Democrats and President Barack Obama has been signed into law. The enormous expansion of federal power that will result from “Obamacare” will have far-reaching effects on the traditional roles and authority of states—and on the freedoms of American citizens. When governors and state legislators…

  • WebMemo posted January 5, 2010 by Dennis G. Smith Medicaid Expansion Ignores States’ Fiscal Crises

    Given Senator Ben Nelson’s (D–NE) sweetheart deal to force federal taxpayers to pick up the cost of mandatory Medicaid expansion in Nebraska, Members of Congress are obviously unfazed about the future costs of their handiwork and the turmoil it will cause among the other states. Under the giant House and Senate health bills, Congress is counting on enrolling 15–20…

  • WebMemo posted December 1, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith, Edmund F. Haislmaier Medicaid Meltdown: Dropping Medicaid Could Save States $1 Trillion

    Congress is about to set off a chain reaction that it has not planned for and will not be able to contain. The health care legislation currently in Congress not only imposes new costs on states through expansion of the Medicaid program; it also preempts state authority in management of the program. Faced with becoming merely an agent of the federal government,…

  • WebMemo posted November 4, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Federalization of Medicaid: Health Reform Bill Would Reduce State Authority

    Medicaid is designed to be a partnership between the states and the federal government. In the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 and again in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, states won additional flexibility to run Medicaid and its companion program, the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). But under H.R. 3962, the health bill introduced last week by…

  • WebMemo posted October 30, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Medicaid Funding of Abortion: Setting the Record Straight

    There is apparently confusion regarding how the federal government enforces the Hyde Amendment prohibition on federal funding of abortion. Such confusion could result in failure to enact appropriate safeguards against government funding of abortions in the overall health care legislation currently under consideration. States Cannot Make Up Their Own Rules It has…

  • Play Movie Dennis Smith on Fox Business 10/22/09 Video Recorded on October 22, 2009 Dennis Smith on Fox Business 10/22/09

    Dennis Smith discussing Medicare.…

  • WebMemo posted October 21, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Why Congress Wants to Force More Americans into Medicaid

    One particularly disturbing feature has emerged from the closed-door negotiations on health care legislation: a massive expansion of Medicaid, the nation's largest welfare program. It is now clear that roughly half of the projected reduction in the uninsured will be due to putting more than 14 million individuals into Medicaid. Congressional liberals' passion…

  • WebMemo posted October 21, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Health Care Bills' Medicaid Expansion: How States Can Lose theBattle Behind Closed Doors

    Congressional leaders are finalizing the details of the massive health care legislation behind closed doors. Its fate may well depend on state officials willingness to accept the future cost of a massive expansion of the Medicaid program. Congress and the Obama Administration are relying on Medicaid to cover at least half of those who would become insured.…

  • WebMemo posted October 15, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith The Baucus Medicaid Provisions: The Senate's Massive WelfareExpansion

    One issue in the Baucus health care bill has not received the attention it deserves: Half of the reduction in the uninsured will result from the enrollment of millions of Americans in Medicaid. Expanding Medicaid is not reform. Americans across the political spectrum who are being promised health reform will, if Congress gets its way, be stunned to find…

  • WebMemo posted October 7, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Congress Breaks Obama Promise on Government Role in Health Care

    One of the reasons Americans are understandably wary of the current health care legislation moving through Congress is that the specifics of legislation do not match the rhetoric of the President. To defuse public suspicions, researchers at the Urban Institute recently published a study trying to persuade ordinary Americans that "[c]urrent national health reform…

  • WebMemo posted September 25, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith The Baucus Health Bill: A Medicare Physician Payment Shell Game

    My colleagues, this is our opportunity to make history. Our actions here, this week, will determine whether we are courageous enough and skillful enough to change things for the better. --Senator Max Baucus, addressing the Senate Finance Committee on September 22, 2009 For all of the bold talk of reform, the provisions of the Senate Finance Committee bill…

  • Play Movie Dennis Smith on CSPAN 8/21/09 Video Recorded on August 21, 2009 Dennis Smith on CSPAN 8/21/09

    Dennis Smith discussing Health Care.…

  • Play Movie Dennis Smith on PBS 8/14/09 Video Recorded on August 14, 2009 Dennis Smith on PBS 8/14/09

    Dennis Smith discussing Health Care Reform…

  • WebMemo posted August 7, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith Health Care Reform in West Virginia: A Lesson from the States

    A big casualty of the congressional health care reform legislation would be the loss of state flexibility in the financing and delivery of affordable health care options for their citizens. Under the House bill, the federal government would regulate private insurance for the first time and dramatically increase its control over the Medicaid program. Flexibility will be…

  • WebMemo posted July 24, 2009 by Dennis G. Smith New Taxpayer Subsidies: The Impact of the House and Senate Health Bills

    Under the House and Senate bills, taxpayers are going to pay more for health insurance. Health insurance is supposed to provide individuals access to quality health care and ensure protection against financial calamity due to a catastrophic illness or injury. But as the cost of insurance rises as a percentage of a family's budget, so does the rate of uninsurance.…