Bill to Ban Smokers From Receiving Medicaid Defeated

February 8 2006, 10:42 PM
What is it with Republicans that so many of their proposals target the poor and the disenfranchised? Happily, state Senators of both parties were on the ball today and killed one of the latest discriminatory measures: A bill to prevent smokers from receiving Medicaid benefits was defeated in the State Senate today.
Senate Bill 101 would ban the state from paying for treatment for tobacco-related head, neck injuries or lung cancer through programs administered by the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing and the Department of Public Health and Environment. ....The Senate Health and Human Service Committee voted unanimously to kill the bill. Both Republicans and Democrats lined up against the bill, saying it would cause more harm than good by simply shifting the costs to public hospitals and emergency rooms that would be forced to treat smokers.
The bill was proposed by Sen. Ron Teck, a Republican from Grand Junction.