It would appear as though Governor Scott Walker is betting big on the public’s dislike of Obamacare. Liberal activists have filed signatures for a recall of the governor, and barring something fishy turning up with the signatures Governor Walker will have to defend himself in that election.
And he’ll do so as a guy who halted the implementation of Obamacare in his state.
Madison — Today Governor Walker announced he will not pursue the implementation of a health insurance exchange and has turned down Early Innovator Grant funding from the federal government. The Governor also will repeal the executive order that created the Office of Free Market Health Care.
“I have directed the Department of Health Services to notify the federal government that we will discontinue any development on a health exchange and that Wisconsin will turn down funding from the Early Innovator Grant program,” said Governor Walker. “Stopping the encroachment of ObamaCare in our state, which has the potential to have a devastating impact on Wisconsin’s economy, is a top priority. Wisconsin has been a leader and innovator in health care reform for two decades, and we have achieved a high level of health insurance coverage without federal mandates. When job creators and Wisconsin families are facing difficult times it doesn’t make sense to commit to a federal health care mandate that will result in hidden taxes for Wisconsin families, increased health care costs and insurance premiums, and more uncertainty in the private sector.”
This is the right move in terms of policy. As has been demonstrated over and over again, Obamacare is bad for business. It’s bad for health insurance. It’s bad for government budgets.
Politically, though, this is an interesting development. Wisconsin is a progressive state. If Walker can beat back a recall after implementing sweeping pension reforms and stonewalling the implementation of Obamacare it doesn’t bode well for Democrats supporting Obamacare and resisting pension reform in other states.