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Pence Defends Healthcare Policy, Promotes ‘Highly-Skilled Workers’ Improvement

Indiana Governor Mike Pence defended his state’s healthcare plan and urged Congressional Republicans to defund the president’s executive action on immigration while supporting improvements in areas such as “highly-skilled workers” on Thursday’s “Laura Ingraham Show.”

Pence re-iterated his opposition to Obamacare and then explained his state’s handling of the healthcare law, saying “we said ‘no’ in Indiana to a state-based exchange, we rejected traditional Medicaid in the Hoosier State. But about eight years ago, in Indiana, Laura, we crafted a Medicaid reform pilot program called the Healthy Indiana Plan that requires people to make individual contributions on a monthly basis into Health Savings Accounts, it’s grounded in the principles of personal responsibility, it’s been remarkably successful in Indiana. And after more than half a year of tough negotiations, we secured the flexibility from the federal government to expand coverage in our state within the framework of the Health Indiana Plan and I truly believe it’s not only a victory for the working poor in Indiana, but I believe it’s a victory for Medicaid reform.” Pence also cited a piece by Grace-Marie Turner referring to his plan as “Medicaid transformation,” and pointed out that Medicaid recipients have to pay in to the system and that Indiana’s plan is “grounded in consumer-driven healthcare.”

On the subject on the president’s executive action on immigration, Pence declared “I strongly support efforts in the Congress to roll back this unconstitutional executive action and I’m proud of the fact that the State of Indiana was one of the very first states to sign on with Texas in a constitutional challenge to that executive order,” and urged Congress to use the power of the purse.

Later, Pence argued “there are sensible and solid voices from all across the Congress that have responsible ways that we could reform and improve, and modernize our [immigration] system,” he continued “things like highly-skilled workers, highly-educated individuals [who want to] get an education here. There are areas where I think there could be broad consensus in the country for improvements that would strengthen America in the long-run, and Congress can consider those things, but…it’s border security first.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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