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Bipartisan Senate Bill Would Let States Opt Out of Obamacare, But Only If Their Own Programs Are As Stringent

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Chris Neefus
CNS News
Nov 26, 2010

Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.), who campaigned on a promise to stop President Obama’s health care reform bill from becoming law, has introduced a bill that would let states opt out of many of its provisions before they are enacted, including the individual mandate.

However, getting a waiver would require states to create their own new health care systems with standards that are at least as stringent as the ones that will be applied at the federal level.

Brown introduced the bill with Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), who voted in favor of health care reform originally, and who successfully added an amendment allowing a waiver process for states to begin in 2017.

The new bill, however, allows that waiver process to begin sooner, in 2014, so states will have the opportunity to get a waiver before beginning the costly and time-consuming process of complying with the federal health care law.

Called the Empowering States to Innovate Act (S. 3958), the two-page bill simply strikes Wyden’s original start date for waivers, making it January 1, 2014 instead of January 1, 2017.

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This article was posted: Friday, November 26, 2010 at 4:53 am

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