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McKeon Statement on Passage of SCHIP

Says Program Should Fund Low-Income Children First

Posted: January 16, 2009 3:00 p.m.
Updated: January 16, 2009 3:08 p.m.
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Following Wednesday's House passage of H.R. 2, the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009, Rep. Howard P. "Buck" McKeon (R-Santa Clarita) made the following statement:

"While thousands of our poorest children in America remain without health coverage, Democrats passed legislation that circumvents the issue and expands the State Children's Health Insurance Program to include higher-income children and a growing number of adults.

"I have supported the SCHIP program since its conception, because there is a real need out there, but those funds should absolutely be helping our lowest-income children first. Our poorest children and families are the priority. Unfortunately, House Democrats chose to put politics first and voted to expand SCHIP far beyond its original intent, and for that reason I had to oppose the legislation in its current form.

"Instead, I voted for the Republican alternative, which would fully-fund the SCHIP program for the next seven years. The Republican alternative would allow all those currently-enrolled to remain in the program, provide for the poorest children first, and hold states accountable by requiring them to report 90% coverage of the lowest income children before shifting enrollment activities to higher-income families.

"The Republican alternative would have restored the original intent of the program. It is my sincere hope that in the future Democrats will be willing to work in a bipartisan way to give our nation's poorest children first priority."

For more information on McKeon's work on SCHIP, click here.

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