Today, Gov. Edwards issued the following statement upon HB 237 which is part of his legislative package being involuntarily deferred in the House Insurance Committee:

“It is an absolute shame that the House Insurance Committee involuntarily deferred HB 237 by Rep. Chad Brown today. This is pure Washington-style politics and Louisianans deserve better than that. This was a simple bill that would have enshrined critical preexisting condition protections into state law.

I have spoken out with governors from both parties about how to improve the Affordable Care Act. But the preexisting condition protections the ACA provides are overwhelmingly popular and critically important. Right now, nearly 850,000 Louisianans remain at risk of losing protections if Attorney General Jeff Landry’s misguided lawsuit is successful.

I am closely monitoring SB 173 by Sen. Mills. Today, a number of amendments were added that were not shared with members of the Committee or my office in advance. One amendment I’m particularly concerned about would allow insurers to charge elderly Louisianans more than under current law.

It’s also clear that establishing a high-risk pool, as the bill seeks to do, would cost hundreds of millions of dollars that haven’t been identified. And it’s not clear that such an arrangement would maintain the current level of protections in law.”

Gov. Edwards’ previous statements on the issue: