A candidate for Congress in Iowa’s first congressional district says he wants to create “risk pools” for small businesses and individuals struggling to find affordable health insurance. Bruce Braley, a Democrat from Waterloo, says the Kaiser Foundation reported last year that 98-percent of large companies offered health insurance benefits but only 59-percent of companies with less than 200 people.
Braley says he wants to guarantee health insurance for every child under age 18. He proposes providing new options for states to expand their children’s health insurance programs. He says the plan would remove the eligibility cap for those state programs. Braley says he’d free up over 30-billion dollars for the program by eliminating two tax cuts scheduled to go in effect later this year.
He says the tax cuts benefit people who earn over 200-thousand dollars a year. By eliminating the cuts, he says the money could be ramped up over the next several years to pay for the program. Republican Jim Nussle, who is running for governor, currently holds the first district seat. Other Democrats in the race include: Rick Dickinson and Michael Anderson, both of Dubuque and Bill Gluba of Davenport. Republicans include: Mike Whalen of Davenport, State Representative Bill Dix of Shell Rock, and Brian Kennedy of Bettendorf.