Aiming to leverage their limited numbers to win hearings on Democratic priorities, House Minority Leader John Rusche suggested Tuesday that his most-liberal members could vote with the most-conservative Republicans against creating a state-run health insurance exchange. Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter wants to use $20.3 million in federal funding to establish an Idaho exchange, the online marketplace foreseen by the 2010 federal health care overhaul to help uninsured individuals and small businesses compare and buy coverage. But to do it, Otter needs at least 36 votes in the 70-member House. With many of the 57 GOP members, especially arch conservatives, likely to reject using federal money on philosophical grounds, Rusche, D-Lewiston, said his 13-member caucus could play a crucial role/John Miller, AP. More here.
- Lawmakers learn Otter's budget wouldn't restore cuts
- Dems' State of State response: 'Culture of arrogance and entitlement'
- Commerce grants are only cuts restore in 2013 budget'
- Budget tries to reduce reliance on one-time money for ongoing programs
- Occupy Boise leaves modest marks on opening of 2012 Legislature/Dan Popkey
- Opinion: Some Idaho State of the State remarks/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press
- Otter backs exchange creation but didn't budget for it in 2013/Dustin Hurst, Idaho Reporter
Question: What do you make of the strategy outlined above of liberal Democrats joining hard line Republicans to block a state-run health insurance exchange?