Editor’s note: Billy Penn is posting analyses of the Pa. Governor’s Race candidates by looking at 10 pressing issues for Pennsylvania millennials. Our first pieces looked at their stances on marijuana, liquor and education. Today we’re looking at health care.
Gov. Tom Corbett (R):
Corbett’s camp got a win this summer when the feds approved the Republican governor’s Medicaid expansion plan. The plan would allow private insurers to essentially subsidize that growth, and let thousands more Pennsylvanians who are uninsured in low-wage jobs have access to health care.
Democrats and some members of the GOP blasted the move, accusing Corbett of failing to expand the versio nof Medicaid that was made available as part of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). Critics said Corbett was trying super hard to keep from agreeing with President Obama.
The kicker? According to the non-partisan Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, health care will still not be affordable for many low-income working families under Corbett’s Medicaid plan. Whether or not that plan goes into effect on Jan. 1 is largely up to who wins the election.
Challenger Tom Wolf (D):
One of the cornerstones of Wolf’s campaign policy on health care was expanding access to Medicaid based on new federal funds made available through the Affordable Care Act — in other words, playing nice with Obamacare. However, Corbett delayed expanding Medicaid until the federal government approved his plan to let private insurers administer the expansion. Wolf has said that as governor, he hopes to nix Corbett’s plan that gets private insurers into the mix and expand Obamacare’s version of Medicaid.
Now that Corbett took the step of expanding Medicaid himself, Wolf is left with plans of improving patient care through keeping more Pennsylvania primary care physicians in the state and enacting nurse-to-patient ratio regulations. Wolf has also said that he supports the state setting up and regulating its own exchange — the federal government currently runs the state’s.