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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin has joined a group of 24 Senators – 12 Democrats and 12 Republicans – in support of bipartisan legislation to begin to stabilize the individual health insurance market, help lower premiums, improve the quality of care for families across Wisconsin and keep the federal debt from spiking $194 billion in 10 years.
“This bipartisan legislation moves us in the right direction by beginning to help stabilize the market, lower costs and improve our health care system,” said Senator Baldwin. “The Senate needs to get the job done and pass this bipartisan solution so we can start providing Wisconsin families relief from rising premiums and higher costs.”
In Wisconsin last week, the Walker Administration announced that average premiums in Wisconsin will jump 36 percent for people buying health coverage through the federally run exchange. The dramatic increase in premiums was based on the Trump Administration ending cost-sharing reduction payments.
The Health Care Stabilization Act of 2017, led by Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA), will strengthen the health care system by beginning to stabilize the markets that millions of families rely on for insurance coverage, reducing the risk of premium spikes and the threat of insurer exits. The bipartisan legislation also helps mitigate the damage done by the Administration’s sabotage by restoring resources for outreach and enrollment for the 2018 and 2019 open enrollment.
Senator Baldwin, a member of the HELP Committee, has been leading the effort in the Senate to restore investments in enrollment outreach and in-person assistance, which the Trump Administration gutted earlier this year. In-person assistance is especially critical to ensuring younger adults sign up for health care, which will further help stabilize the market and lower costs. The bipartisan legislation provides funding to support in-person navigators and outreach efforts for the 2018 and 2019 enrollment periods, and holds the Trump Administration accountable for making these investments to provide the essential consumer outreach and assistance to help families enroll in coverage that meets their needs.
Republicans cosponsoring the Alexander-Murray legislation: Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Bob Corker (R-Tenn), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Johnny Isakson (R-Georgia), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.).
Democrats cosponsoring Alexander-Murray legislation: Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Angus King (I-Maine), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.).
The text of the legislation is available here.
A section-by-section summary is available here.
An online version of this release is available here.