The U.S. House will reconvene Tuesday for a vote affecting Medicaid funding and teachers’ jobs. The Senate passed the bill last week, that means $138 million in funding for South Carolina’s state Medicaid programs, and that will save the jobs of approximately 2,600 teachers in the state.
The House and Senate must pass the legislation in identical form, but House Majority Whip James Clyburn says he expects the House to pass the current proposal by mid-afternoon without changing a comma. He says he expects the president to sign it into law shortly after.
Clyburn says state lawmakers made cuts before they adjourned this year, based on the governor’s vetoes, anticipating that the Medicaid funding would not be received. He says some of those cuts need to be restored.
Some of those vetoes were sustained in anticipation of not getting the money. Now that it’s coming, I would hope that the legislature would take the opportunity to restore some of the cuts. Some of them I think could cause grave harm to the state.
Among the cut programs was one that supplied drugs to AIDS patients.
It was a tremendous program, one of the best programs in the country. For them to get zeroed out as they were is not right. I’ve tried to get the program some federal funds but it’s not enough.
Clyburn says when the Medicaid funding is received, he wants state lawmakers to replace funding to the Human Affairs Commission, which was cut $600,000. He says that removed the organization’s administration and devastated it.
I don’t know what the governor was thinking when he did that. If you know anything about South Carolina, you know why Governor John West, in his wisdom, created the commission, and why it passed both the House and Senate by unanimous vote.