NAHU completed our 2022 Capital Conference last week. This event is always a yearly high-point for our Association because of its "boots on the ground" advocacy for the work we do as agents and brokers. Attending each year not only gives members an opportunity to hear what is happening legislatively around the country but to also participate in very important healthcare discussions with our federal legislators.
This year Amy Walter, the Editor-In-Chief and Publisher of The Cook Political Report gave the keynote address. For those not familiar, The Cook Political Report is a a non-partisan national newsletter that analyses elections and campaigns for the Presidency, Congress, and governors races. In her comments, Ms. Walter gave a comprehensive overview of the state of the Presidency, what is happening in congressional races and mapping and discussed how events in Ukraine could impact congressional mid-term races.
Locally, NCAHU members have been holding virtual meetings with our federal legislators to discuss 2022 federal legislative priorities. Thus far, all active, non-retiring members of Congress are scheduled with their respective chapter representatives.
The NC General Assembly joint committee studying Medicaid expansion has now met twice. The second meeting convened with a full slate of presentations about how expansion would work, how it could be paid for, and whom it would help. They also heard how the state compares nationally. Speakers at the last meeting included the NC State Association of Healthcare Plans, DHHS Medicaid Secretary Dave Richard, and the NC Rural Center among others. On the heels of that meeting the NCAHU General Assembly Action Committee Chairs, myself and David Smith met with Senior Policy Advisor to the NC Senate, Nathan Babcock and Legislative Research Assistant to Rep. Donny Lambeth, Blair Burr to discuss how, expanding Medicaid would impact NC employers and the agent/broker community. The discussion was positive and NCAHU has been asked to be a part of the April 26th joint committee meeting.
Finally, the NC General Assembly asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene and stop the new congressional maps approved by the NC State Supreme Court. Republican leaders had asked the U.S. Supreme Court to find that under the "independent state legislature" doctrine, state courts have no authority to overrule the legislature's authority to create congressional districts. The U.S. Constitution, they argued, leaves that question in the hands of the legislature, not the courts. A majority of the justices declined the requests with Justice Kavanaugh saying the petition was too close to the May 17th primaries to take up the case.
The new congressional map can be found here https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/redistricting-2022-maps/north-carolina/
Until next month,
Chair, General Assembly Action Committee