What: All Issues : Government Checks on Corporate Power : Insurance Industry : H.R. 660. Health Plans for Small Businesses/Vote to Recommit to Committee a Bill Which Would Exempt Small Businesses from State Laws Regulating the Quality of Employee Health Plans.
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H.R. 660. Health Plans for Small Businesses/Vote to Recommit to Committee a Bill Which Would Exempt Small Businesses from State Laws Regulating the Quality of Employee Health Plans.
house Roll Call 295     Jun 19, 2003
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

One of the few procedural prerogatives available to opponents of legislation is the motion to recommit. If successful, a motion to recommit sends the measure back to committee and is usually accompanied with specific instructions to amend the bill. During debate on a GOP-drafted bill which would allow small businesses to combine their resources to purchase so-called "association" health plans for their employees, Congresswoman McCarthy (D-NY) motioned to recommit the bill to committee with instructions to add a provision which would prohibit employers from switching to association health care plans that do not provide their employees with the same level of coverage against breast cancer as did their previous health plan. While Progressives support the idea of allowing small businesses to combine their resources before purchasing health insurance plans, they opposed the GOP-drafted legislation because provisions in that bill would exempt association health plans from state law. In the view of Progressives, state laws that mandate coverage for diseases such as breast cancer provide a necessary guarantee that patients receive health care plans that provide adequate protections against health problems that may arise. Progressives argued that exempting association health plans from state law would enable employers to provide health care plans to their employees which contain gaping holes in coverage. Additionally, Progressives worried that exempting association plans from state law would provide employers with a financial incentive to switch from more comprehensive health plans that provide coverage for a wide range of diseases and health conditions to less-expensive health plans that do not provide workers with the same level of coverage as did their previous health insurance policy. Progressives voted in favor of the motion to recommit based on their opposition to the GOP-drafted bill but the motion was rejected on a 192-230 vote.

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