Two Governors Join Medicaid Commission

Two governors have joined the Medicaid Commission as voting members, defying the National Governors Association (NGA). Governors Jeb Bush (R-Fla) and Joe Manchin, III (D-W.Va.) have joined the commission, which is recommending ways to cut Medicaid spending.

Congress formed the commission as part of a 2006 budget resolution to recommend ways to cut Medicaid by $10 billion over a four-year period. The makeup of the commission has been controversial since it was formed by Secretary of Health and Human Services Mike Leavitt. Previously, members of the NGA refused to participate in the commission because the NGA submitted its own recommendations to Congress for changes to Medicaid. Congressional members have also refused to participate in the commission because they had non-voting roles.

In September, the commission released a report with its recommendations for cutting Medicaid spending. It plans to release a set of long-term recommendations in December 2006.

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