The Florida House Representatives spent hours Thursday questioning the Florida Health Insurance Affordability Exchange plan. For more than 2.5 hours the FHIX plan was questioned, while Mia Jones D-Jacksonville, Fla.,tried to defend it.
The FHIX bill raised concerns because of the amount of federal money needed to expand the healthcare in Florida.
The bill was sponsored by Rep. Jones, who presented and stood by the bill to help those who are uninsured get healthcare coverage for them and their families.
Rep. Matt Caldwell, R-Fort Meyers, Fla., questioned the bill by calling it a Medicaid expansion plan and that the program had similar characteristics of Medicaid.
After hours of questions for Rep. Jones from members of the house, the question still remains did she reach enough people in order to get the bill passed?
“Rumor has it that if they vote for this plan, then they won’t get re-elected and we know that all of the senators over there have voted for this at some point and have come back,” said Rep. Jones.
“I don’t want anyone to feel like because you may or may not get re-elected that you will not do the right thing for Floridians,” Jones added
Not much support came from the House Speaker Steve Crisafulli R-Tallahassee, Fla., as the session came to a close.
“Well based on what we heard today it’s safe to say that there are not enough votes for the FHIX plan here in the house,” said Rep. Crisafulli.
“Its Medicaid Expansion regardless of what others say, but again other people have different ideas of what their challenges are with this bill but certainly it is Medicaid Expansion,” Crisafulli added.
The Democrats say this bill should have been carried by a Republican.
“We prefer a Republican to have carried it; it seems to be a little more persuasive when a Republican does it in this chamber,” said Rep. Mark Pafford, D-West Palm Beach, Fla.
With not much support from the Republicans, the Democrats will need a number of Republican votes in order to get this bill passed.