Iowa Senator Joni Ernst, a Republican from Red Oak, says she is still reviewing the Senate health care bill that was unveiled Thursday. She was asked at an event today what she would say to Iowans who are afraid they would lose their Medicaid coverage under the bill.
“I would say we’re still going through this bill, we’ll have some lengthy discussions, but I wouldn’t say we are losing it. We do need to go through the bill — but we want to make sure Iowans are protected,” Ernst says. She says Medicaid will be part of the discussion when they return to work on Monday.
“I think we are thoroughly vetting the bill and we will continue to move through that process. We will have a lot of time committed to speaking just about the health care bill. It’s up to leadership when they call that up for a vote ,”Ernst says. “But, we will continue to hear from our constituents, and we are already.” Ernst says she can’t yet specifically say what parts of the bill she would support or oppose.
“It was just released yesterday, so we have 142 pages to go through. And just as we did with the AHCA that came over from the House, I want to make sure that I have time to go through it, talk to my staff, talk to folks around Iowa and understand what the impacts of the bill are,” Ernst says. Ernst says the senators who put the bill together understand the issues facing Iowa.
“They are very aware of Iowa’s situation,” according to Reynolds, “but again we have to talk through this. Now that we have the draft — and again it is just draft text — to make sure it is workable for Iowa.” Ernst made her comments during an event at the Iowa State Capitol on another issue.