Milwaukee, WI – Today, in response to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) approval of Governor Scott Walker’s “BadgerCare Reform” project to impose work requirements on certain Medicaid recipients, Reps. Gwen Moore (WI-04) and Mark Pocan (WI-02) released the following statement with Wisconsin Tribal Nations.
“The approval of this waiver by the Trump Administration will have devasting effects on low-income and vulnerable populations in Wisconsin, particularly on tribal nations who will likely be disproportionally harmed,” said Congresswoman Moore. “Imposing work requirements and monthly premiums on Wisconsinites is in direct contradiction with the proposal’s stated desire to ‘ensure that every Wisconsin resident has access to affordable health insurance to reduce the state’s uninsured rate,’ as it is certain to drastically reduce Medicaid enrollment. As elected officials, it is our duty to ensure that our state’s most vulnerable are afforded access to health care services without barriers. Governor Walker’s policy is nothing more than a shameful continuation of his war on the poor.”
“The Trump Administration’s approval of Governor Walker’s plan to impose work requirements on BadgerCare recipients will only result in fewer Wisconsinites with health care,” said Congressman Pocan. “As we saw in Arkansas, where over 4,000 people receiving Medicaid lost their health coverage due to work requirements, Governor Walker’s plan puts the most vulnerable members of our community at risk of losing access to health care when they need it most. This is unacceptable.”
“Sadly, economic development has passed by many in Indian County so the decision to make employment a precondition to receive health care benefits will have an immediate, negative impact on our community. The State of Wisconsin and CMS are not in a place to unilaterally change the treaty and trust relationship between Wisconsin Tribal Nations and the United States, but this waiver does just that. Tribal governments will take the State up on the opportunity to engage in consultation in hopes to improve this oversight. We hope the State and CMS will recognize the unique nature of our relationship, and we will work to further educate decision-makers on all sides,” Chairman Cox (Menominee), Chairman Hill (Oneida), President Holsey (Stockbridge-Munsee), Chairman Peterson (Red Cliff), Chairman Taylor (Lac Courte Oreilles), Chairman Wiggins (Bad River), and Chairman McGeshick (Sokaogon Chippewa) said in a joint statement.