Black’s Legislation to Close Medicaid Loophole in Health Care Law Passes Senate in Overwhelming Bipartisan Vote
Washington, D.C.—Today, U.S. Representative Diane Black (R-TN), released the following statement after her legislation, H.R. 2576, passed the Senate by a vote of 95-0. Black’s bill closes a loophole in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) that would have allowed some middle class Americans to receive Medicaid benefits. H.R. 2576 was passed as part of a Senate package that also repealed the government’s proposed 3 percent withholding requirement on contractors:
“I am pleased the Senate took decisive action on my Medicaid legislation as well at the 3 percent withholding repeal. Both bills are bipartisan, common-sense solutions that I hope will be signed by the president as soon as possible. The 3 percent withholding repeal will be a great help to our economy by creating more certainty for small businesses, and my legislation to close this loophole in the health care law will ensure scarce Medicaid dollars go to those most in need.
“When the Affordable Care Act was passed, few realized that because of a change in the income eligibility formula for Medicaid, a couple with close to $60,000 in income could qualify to receive Medicaid benefits. Put another way, individuals whose incomes are up to 400% of the federal poverty level could qualify for federally subsidized health care—a totally unacceptable scenario. Medicaid was meant to assist the neediest Americans, and my legislation ensures the intent of Medicaid stays the same. Earlier this year, the Congressional Budget Office estimated my legislation would save $13 billion over ten years, all without taking away a benefit from anyone who currently relies on Medicaid.”