Perhaps the biggest single element for saving money— while simultaneously rescuing a critical part of our safety net— is block granting Medicaid through the State Health and Flexibility Act (HR 4160), which more than doubles the Medicaid savings achieved in the Ryan budget. This bill grants states maximum flexibility to design health care programs that will meet the needs of their most vulnerable residents.
What makes HR 4160 different from other block grant bills? Simple: It removes the power of the Washington bureaucracy to mess it up! It achieves this by requiring that money directed to the states each month be sent to them directly from the Treasury Department. No more passing federal funding through the labyrinth of the Department of HHS and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid – no more opportunities for bureaucrats to concoct regulations to turn legislative intent into prohibitive requirements and yes’s into no’s.
This is the pure federalism envisioned by Ronald Reagan 30 years ago – and it’s way overdue. If our countrymen are serious about surviving and passing the American Dream on to our children and grandchildren, they will raise their voices in support of the adults at the RSC to take charge of Washington spending.
Susan Carleson, the widow of Robert B. Carleson, Ronald Reagan's Chief Welfare Advisor, is Chairman and President of the American Civil Rights Union and the Carleson Center for Public Policy.