(Austin, TEXAS) – Today, the Texas House of Representatives voted on the amendment by Rep. Garnet Coleman (D-Houston) to seek a federal waiver to reduce the uninsured population in the state of Texas. All 67 Members of the Texas House Democratic Caucus voted for this amendment, but it fell short of passing.
Rep. Coleman, who also serves as the Chair of the Legislative Study Group, said the following while presenting his amendment on the House Floor:
“This amendment provides flexibility, incorporates conservative principles like personal responsibility and benefit flexibility, and most important it will be revenue neutral, because the state’s cost to enact a waiver like the one envisioned by this amendment is offset by the expected savings of a uniquely Texas plan. … All this amendment does is to direct HHSC and Governor Abbott to seek a waiver to bring our federal tax dollars home to help reduce the number of uninsured. I think both Democrats and Republicans can support that fiscally responsible goal.”
Rep. Chris Turner (D-Grand Prairie), chair of the Texas House Democratic Caucus, issued the following statement:
“For years, reducing our state’s huge uninsured population has been a core priority for Texas House Democrats. I’m so grateful for Rep. Coleman, whose leadership inspired 68 votes for this life-saving policy.
“With its potential to provide millions of Texans with quality, affordable health insurance at no cost to the state, Rep. Coleman’s measure was just common sense. Although I’m disappointed Republicans yet again have voted against the best interests of Texas, we will not give up the fight until all Texans have access to the quality, affordable health care they deserve.”