State of Kentucky Archives: on Health Care

James Comer: ObamaCare stifles businesses; pass tort reform instead

President Obama has placed the government between you and your doctor. That is unacceptable. The ObamaCare machine is just getting started, and the impact of this misguided law will have long-term repercussions. We need leadership in Washington that will repeal ObamaCare. Not only is ObamaCare having an impact on individuals, but it is also stifling businesses from creating jobs.

We must also pass tort reform to protect doctors from frivolous lawsuits that drive up the cost of healthcare. In my discussions with doctors, they spend too much time and money on defensive medicine, meaning that doctors require x-rays and other defensive medicine to protect them in the event of a lawsuit rather than treating the patient's issue. Once in office, I will work with doctors to improve this situation so that citizens aren't paying more for their medical visits.

Source: 2016 Kentucky House campaign website Nov 8, 2016

Jim Gray: Ensure solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund

The solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund has been extended by 13 years since the passage of health reform. Jim believes we should go even further to bring costs down, and it doesn't have to be on the backs of our seniors.

Continuous improvement is always essential in business and government. Medicare has remained solvent because of our ability to make improvements to the program without turning it into a voucher program.

Source: 2016 Kentucky Senate campaign website, Aug 8, 2016

Jack Conway: Recovered $600M by suing providers for Medicaid fraud

Conway has increased Medicaid fraud collections by more than 600%. He has recovered nearly $300 million for Medicaid programs. Jack's Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control Unit has been named one of the most aggressive investigative units in the country by an independent watchdog group.

In 2011, Jack announced a $26.4 million settlement involving the Passport Health Plan for breaking state law when Passport paid some physician groups and hospital partners dividends out of the non-profit agency's surplus.

Source: 2015 Kentucky Governor campaign website, Aug 11, 2015

Matt Bevin: Disband KYNECT immediately; transition to federal system

Health care reform in Kentucky begins with freezing and beginning to disband KYNECT immediately and assisting as needed in transitioning our citizens quickly from a state run exchange to the federally run healthcare exchange because Kentucky cannot financially afford to do otherwise.
Source: 2015 Kentucky Gubernatorial campaign website, Aug 11, 2015

Alison Grimes: Kynect heroically for expanding Medicaid under ObamaCare

Grimes called the Democratic governor, a longtime enemy of her father, heroic for expanding Medicaid under ObamaCare: "Over half a million Kentuckians' lives are better as a result of Gov. [Steve] Beshear's expansion of Medicaid and creation of our state-based exchange."

She warned that McConnell would take away coverage from half a million people who can now get prescriptions and visit doctor.

Interestingly, while "ObamaCare" is unpopular, the state's health expansion, called "Kynect," actually is. McConnell has gotten himself in hot water before by trying to draw a distinction between the federal law and the state program. While he criticized Medicaid expansion, he responded when asked if he would do away with Kynect: "It's a state decision. That's fine. I think it's fine to have a website. Yeah."

Source: on 2014 Kentucky Senate debate Oct 14, 2014

Mitch McConnell: ObamaCare's Kynect is a state decision, but yeah, it's ok

McConnell has gotten himself in hot water before by trying to draw a distinction between the federal law and the state program. While he criticized Medicaid expansion, he responded when asked if he would do away with Kynect: "It's a state decision. That's fine. I think it's fine to have a website. Yeah."

McConnell also disputed the idea that Beshear's program has covered 500,000 more people, arguing that many of them are now paying more for lower-quality coverage. Democrats pounced, with Beshear saying in a post-debate statement: "Tonight, Mitch McConnell looked into the camera and misled Kentucky about his plan to take Kynect from more than 500,000 Kentuckians who have gained health care in the last year."

Source: on 2014 Kentucky Senate debate Oct 14, 2014

Steve Beshear: Kentucky leads the way on affordable health care for all

We are shrugging off an historic reputation for backwardness and instead are writing a new narrative founded on change and innovation. And the nation has taken notice. Over the last three months I've told Kentucky's story on influential programs like Meet the Press, C-SPAN, CNN, the BBC, NPR, and in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. These national opinion-shapers didn't want to talk about the usual Kentucky subjects of basketball, bourbon and horse racing. They wanted to know about Kentucky leading the way on providing affordable health care to all of its people and designing a high-tech benefits exchange that has become a national model.
Source: 2014 Kentucky State of the State speech Jan 7, 2014

Mitch McConnell: ObamaCare is a train wreck; do what we can to repeal it

SCHIEFFER: Let me ask you about Senator Ted Cruz. He led this effort to tie the defunding of ObamaCare to shutting down the government. He said he is not backing away. He says he will continue to do "anything he can" to stop what he calls "the train wreck that is ObamaCare."

McCONNELL: Well, I certainly agree with Senator Cruz that ObamaCare is indeed a train wreck. People--even if they could access the website--can't get quotes. Even those who may be fortunate enough to sign up are going to find that the premiums are higher and the choices are fewer. One thing that all Republicans agreed on back in 2009 is that we thought ObamaCare was a terrible mistake for the country. We still think that, and we're going to do everything we can in the future to try to repeal it. But that requires a Republican Senate and a different president. We have a math problem in the Senate in getting rid of ObamaCare: 55 Democrats and 45 Republicans. I'd like to have 51.

Source: CBS Face the Nation 2013 series: 2014 Kentucky Senate race Oct 20, 2013

Alison Grimes: Delay mandated coverage, but keep ObamaCare

On the Affordable Care Act, Grimes was cautiously critical. "I am troubled by some of the provisions," she said, and for the first time said exactly which one. "There are 700,000 businesses in Kentucky and I am concerned that especially the smaller ones are overburdened," she said.

Her suggestion: delay the imposition of the coverage mandate on small business, as the president already has done for larger corporations. "The mandate will not work for many small businesses in Kentucky," she said, "so I believe that a delay is the right course so that changes can be made."

She also blasted McConnell for wanting to abandon the law altogether, pointing out that the state's health ratings are among the worst in the nation, and that other provisions in the law will extend coverage to an estimated 600,000 more Kentuckians. "Unlike Sen. McConnell, I don't want to throw the baby out with the bath water," she said.

Source: Huffington Post coverage of 2014 Kentucky Senate debates Aug 3, 2013

Jack Conway: Pay for Obamacare with bulk purchasing & fraud units

Q: If you want to get serious about the national debt, you have to do something about entitlements. Tell me of a single benefit you would reduce?

CONWAY: We need Medicare bulk purchasing. That would save about $200 billion. That would be the first bill I introduce when I go to the US Senate. Secondly, we need Medicare fraud units in each and every state. Estimates are there are about $100 billion in fraud.

Q: Are you willing to reduce a benefit?

CONWAY: Let me say one more thing on what I want to do as well. I think we need to end the offshore tax loopholes, a $130 billion in those. It can be done like that. We need a pay-as-you-go system. And then we also need a bipartisan debt commission to come back with recommendations.

Q: Dr. Paul, you say you want to repeal Obamacare; for Social Security, would you raise the retirement age?

PAUL: -for younger people, yes.

Source: Fox News Sunday, 2010 Kentucky Senate debate Oct 3, 2010

Rand Paul: Obamacare will cost $3T & health insurance still goes up 15%

CONWAY: I'm not for the $2,000 deductible and taking our health care system back to a pre-World War II system, which is what Rand Paul said. So I'd like to fix health care. He wants to repeal it.

PAUL: It's incredibly foolhardy to have a trillion-dollar stimulus and then another trillion dollars into Obamacare. The thing about government also is they notoriously underestimate the cost of things. What the Democrats tell us will be a trillion- dollar health care could turn into a $3 trillion nightmare, a drag on the economy. It's already causing unemployment in Kentucky. My health insurance went up 15 percent since Obamacare was passed. What is going to happen is it's going to hurt the economy and hurt jobs in Kentucky.

Source: Fox News Sunday, 2010 Kentucky Senate debate Oct 3, 2010

Bruce Lunsford: McConnell is bought and paid for by drug companies

During the forum, the candidates agreed on several broad policy issues, such as eliminating the capital gains tax. But they frequently traded shots over each other’s political backers. Lunsford repeated his claim that McConnell is “bought and paid for” by special interests such as drug companies and the oil industry, while McConnell described Lunsford as a patsy of labor unions.
Source: 2008 Kentucky Senate debate reported in Herald-Leader Aug 21, 2008

  • The above quotations are from Commonwealth of Kentucky Politicians: Archives.
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2016 Presidential contenders on Health Care:
Gov.Jeb Bush(FL)
Dr.Ben Carson(MD)
Gov.Chris Christie(NJ)
Sen.Ted Cruz(TX)
Carly Fiorina(CA)
Gov.Jim Gilmore(VA)
Sen.Lindsey Graham(SC)
Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
Gov.Bobby Jindal(LA)
Gov.John Kasich(OH)
Gov.Sarah Palin(AK)
Gov.George Pataki(NY)
Sen.Rand Paul(KY)
Gov.Rick Perry(TX)
Sen.Rob Portman(OH)
Sen.Marco Rubio(FL)
Sen.Rick Santorum(PA)
Donald Trump(NY)
Gov.Scott Walker(WI)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee(RI)
Secy.Hillary Clinton(NY)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)
Gov.Martin O`Malley(MD)
Sen.Bernie Sanders(VT)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren(MA)
Sen.Jim Webb(VA)

2016 Third Party Candidates:
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Roseanne Barr(PF-HI)
Robert Steele(L-NY)
Dr.Jill Stein(G,MA)
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Page last updated: Feb 13, 2018