Governor Christie Continues Prudent Approach to Federal Health Care Implementation with Veto of State-Run Exchange Legislation
Veto Avoids Saddling State Taxpayers with Huge, Open-Ended Exchange Costs Without Comparative Details of Alternatives from the Federal Government
Trenton, NJ – Continuing a careful and thoughtful approach that appropriately considers the best interests of the state’s residents and taxpayers, Governor Chris Christie today vetoed legislation that would have begun to establish a State-based health care exchange in New Jersey in line with the federal Affordable Care Act. Though December 14, 2012 is the deadline for states to decide whether to establish a State-based Exchange, the federal government has failed to provide critical information and to answer basic questions about the operation and implementation of each of the options provided, making any decision made now hasty, incomplete, and perhaps fiscally detrimental to the taxpayers of New Jersey.
Governor Christie has consistently stated that once legal issues surrounding the Affordable Care Act were settled, New Jersey would comply with the federal mandate, but only in the most responsible way among the available alternatives. The creation of health care exchanges is provided for in the Affordable Care Act as the vehicle for eligible individuals and businesses to access care, with three exchange options being given to states: Federally Facilitated, Partnership, or State-based. Though the federal government’s deadline for states to select the type of exchange they will participate in is nearly here, New Jersey and all other states still await substantial federal guidance on all three options.
“We will comply with the Affordable Care Act, but only in the most efficient and cost effective way for New Jersey taxpayers. Such an important decision as how to best move forward for New Jerseyans can only be understood and reasonably made when fairly and fully compared to the overall value of the other options. Until the federal government gives us all the necessary information, any other action than this would be fiscally irresponsible,” said Governor Christie. “Thus far, we lack such critical information from the federal government. I will not ask New Jerseyans to commit today to a State-based Exchange when the federal government cannot tell us what it will cost, how that cost compares to other options, and how much control they will give the states over this option that comes at the cost of our state’s taxpayers.”
Governor Christie has previously and continually cited the importance – both from a fiscal and health care policy perspective – of having additional clarity and guidance from the federal government on a host of critical issues related to implementation of the Affordable Care Act at the state level. Absent this critical information about cost, cost-sharing, scope of control, and the federal rulemaking landscape, New Jersey cannot fairly evaluate the best or most fiscally prudent path to follow for its residents.
“Financing the building and implementation of a State-based Exchange would be an extraordinarily costly endeavor,” continued Governor Christie. “While the federal governmental has enabled states to apply for grant funding to cover some of the initial costs of such an endeavor, the total price for such a program has never been quantified, and is likely to be onerous. Without knowing the full scope of which Exchange option would be most beneficial and cost efficient for New Jerseyans, it would be irresponsible to force such a bill on our citizens.”admin | Filed under: Chris Christie, Health Care, ObamaCare, Press Release | Tags: Chris Christie, Health Care Exchange, ObamaCare, Press Release, veto | Comments Off on Christie Vetos ObamaCare Exchange
Could Gay Marriage Be An Issue In The U.S. Senate Race?
In an email to his membership this afternoon, Garden State Equality President Steven Goldstein claimed that the New Jersey State Legislature is close to overriding Governor Chris Christie’s veto of the Marriage Equality and Religious Exemptions Act:
This has already been the most productive year in our organization’s history. We passed marriage equality through both houses of the legislature, and quickly followed that up with the passage and signing into law of a new school bullying bill. In recent weeks, we’ve been laying the groundwork to achieve marriage equality through an override of Governor Christie’s veto. Since the legislature voted to pass marriage equality in February, we’ve won over another couple of legislators to our side. If you signed up to form an Override Club of your friends and neighbors in your legislative district to help us strategize and organize for marriage equality locally, we’ll be calling you soon.
Friends, we are closer to seeing marriage equality become law in New Jersey than we ever thought would be possible under a Governor opposed to marriage equality. I swear to God, if someone would have told me a couple of years ago – when we all assumed we’d have to wait until another Governor to win – that we could be this unbelievably close this soon, frankly I’d have told them they were crazy. Our momentum is stunning. Our dream is in our grasp. And we have you to thank. You never stopped believing. Together, we have never let up.
“It’s not happening,” said a GSE sympathiser who asked not to be identified, “Steve must be trying to gin up his troops or raise money. An override is less likely now than it was in February.”Art Gallagher | Filed under: 2012 U.S. Senate Race, Bob Menendez, Civil Rights, Gay Marriage, marriage, Marriage Equality, Marriage Equality and Religious Exemptions Act | Tags: Bob Menendez, Chris Christie, civil unions, Democratic Leadership, Garden State Equality, Gay Marriage, Joe Kyrillos, Marriage Equality, over ride, override, State Legislature, top priority, veto | Comments Off on Garden State Equality Claims They’re Close To Marriage Equality Overide