Westerman Introduces First Bill, Gives States Flexibility In Creating Medicaid Expansion Rules

February 12, 2015
Press Release


WASHINGTON – Congressman Bruce Westerman (R-Hot Springs) filed his first bill Wednesday (February 12) since being sworn into the 114th Congress on January 6.

The bill, H.R. 886, would provide states the flexibility to create workforce requirements for able-bodied individual Medicaid expansion recipients.

"During my time in the Arkansas General Assembly, I came to realize that while I was attempting to do what was best for my state house district, my hands were often tied by the laws and regulations put in place at the federal level," Westerman said. "The goal of the State Flexibility and Workforce Requirement Act of 2015 is not to create a work requirement in Arkansas. The goal is simply to give my former colleagues in Little Rock the freedom to self-govern and set their own requirements for those able-bodied individuals seeking Medicaid assistance. If states are the ones administering the benefit to their citizens, who are we in the federal government to tell them yes or no when it comes to the specific rules they may want to set?"

Co-sponsors of H.R. 886 include Rep. Rob Bishop (R, UT-01), Rep. Rod Blum (R, IA-01), Rep. Rick Crawford (R, AR-01), Rep. French Hill (R, AR-02), Rep. David Rouzer (R, NC-07), and Rep. Steve Womack (R, AR-03).

The bill may be found here. A Westerman op-ed on H.R. 886 may be found here.