WASHINGTON – Sen. Lindsey Graham plans to introduce a measure today (Tuesday) that would allow states to opt out of key components of the new health-insurance law if their legislatures and governors authorize it.
Graham’s bill, which he has crafted with fellow Republican Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, would enable states to shield their residents from having to buy health insurance as required by the landmark legislation President Barack Obama signed into law last March.
The Graham measure would also let states pass legislation freeing their businesses from the mandate to provide employees medical coverage and rejecting expansion of Medicaid benefits.
“Opting out would take the health-care debate from Washington to the states and give people more say,” Graham, a Seneca, S.C., Republican, said. “At the end of the day, this is a waiver for states if they choose to take it.”
Graham said his bill would codify an idea that then-Gov.-elect Nikki Haley raised with Obama at a White House meeting in December.