INSIDERS’ VIEW: Governor’s Plan “Bizarre”

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Iowa Senate Minority Leader Bill Dix said even though Governor Terry Branstad's new health care reform idea covers thousands of fewer Iowans and could costs tens of millions of dollars more than expanding Medicaid, he supports it because it's "an Iowa plan."

Dix appearing on Channel 13's "The Insiders" Sunday morning, said, "The current (Medicaid) system is really failing patients."

Dix said he favors the governor's approach to making recipients pay something toward their monthly health care premiums but also allowing them to lower their costs by participating in wellness plans.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said, while he favors expanding Medicaid to needy Iowans, he, too, supports the idea of promoting wellness plans to recipients. "Absolutely. Absolutely," McCarthy responded about a wellness concept.

However, McCarthy said of the governor's overall health care plan, "Why he would pursue a plan that costs more and covers less...that doesn't make any sense to us."

"Where he is at with this proposal and this larger issue, is very bizarre, in my view," McCarthy added.

The governor released his health care plan Thursday without fanfare as part of a house bill. Monday will be the first full day of work at the Iowa Statehouse where lawmakers know the full details of the governor's plan. But Dix said the late release doesn't put lawmakers in a bind, even though they are less than a month away from their scheduled session end.

For part 2, click here

In part 2 of "The Insiders", the legislators weighed in about whether it was offensive for former University of Iowa Football Coach Hayden Fry to paint the visitors' locker room pink. One called it "much ado about nothing." The other said, "I would paint it green."

(Clarification from the video: The conference took place at Prairie Meadows in Altoona, not DMACC.)

For part 3, click here

In part 3 of "The Insiders", the panelists, who represent the minority party in their respective chambers, give their take on what the majority party isn't doing right.

For part 4, click here

In part 4 of "The Insiders", the lawmakers answer everything from the governor's silence on an issue, to whether Congress should take a 5% pay cut, to whether they are more connected than the average American.

For part 5, click here

In part 5 of "The Insiders", the guests offer their predictions.