House Considering Balanced Budget Act; Prospects Low in Senate – Impact on Medicaid if it SucceedsImage Banner

House Considering Balanced Budget Act; Prospects Low in Senate – Impact on Medicaid if it Succeeds

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House Considering Balanced Budget Act; Prospects Low in Senate – Impact on Medicaid if it Succeeds

April 9, 2018

According to The Hill:

“The House is slated to vote next week on a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution after lawmakers return from their Easter recess.

The decision to bring the measure — which would require Congress not to spend more than it brings in — to the floor comes just weeks after the passage of a $1.3 trillion spending package that is projected to add billions to the deficit.

[…]

The measure has virtually no chance of becoming law as it would need Democratic support in the Senate and ratification from the majority of states. While conservative hard-liners largely support the proposal, critics argue adding a constitutional amendment could weaken economic activity and exacerbate recessions by limiting the government's ability to spend money.

The decision to take up the measure stems from an agreement struck between Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Republican Study Committee Chairman Mark Walker (R-N.C.) in October. Ryan agreed on a vote on the amendment in exchange for conservative support on a procedural budget measure needed for Republicans to move forward on tax reform.”

Read the full article here.

ANCOR wishes to reassure members that it is too early to be anxious about this bill, even if the House votes on and possibly passes it, given the lack of interest in this topic in the Senate. ANCOR understands that things can change rapidly in Congress. Because balanced budget efforts could lead to cuts to the safety net (read this helpful blog post by The Arc), we are closely monitoring this bill. However, at this time this remains a bill to be monitored rather than actively considered a threat to the stability of services, given the hurdles that surround amending the Constitution. We will keep our members informed if anything changes and action is needed!