Iowa Senate refuses House’s low-income health plan

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Senate has rejected the governor’s low-income health plan approved by the House this week.

Democrats, who support a Medicaid expansion plan, voted Wednesday against Gov. Terry Branstad’s measure for low-income Iowans on a party-line vote, 26 to 24. The House approved the bill Tuesday.

The measure now returns to the House. It will likely end up in a joint committee where lawmakers of both parties and chambers will seek a compromise.

Democrats say Medicaid expansion would cover 150,000 additional low-income residents. The federal government would pay the full cost for the first three years, then 10 percent would gradually shift to the state.

Branstad opposes it, saying it’s an unsustainable cost for the federal government.

Democrats say Branstad’s plan would cost the state more and cover fewer people.

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