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Hickenlooper set to testify Thursday to the Senate about health insurance

Author: Tom Ramstack - September 6, 2017 - Updated: September 7, 2017

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Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, left, joined by Ohio Gov. John Kasich, speaks during a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington. The bipartisan governor duo is urging Congress to retain the federal health care law’s unpopular individual mandate while seeking to stabilize individual insurance markets as legislators continue work on a long-term replacement law. Kasich, and Hickenlooper shared their plan in a letter to congressional leaders Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, file)

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper is scheduled to testify Thursday before a U.S. Senate committee on his plan for stabilizing health insurance premiums, the same plan he presented at the Colorado Capitol last week.

“The governor will be sharing Colorado’s experience with the individual insurance marketplace,” Jacque Montgomery, the governor’s press secretary, told Colorado Politics.

About 18 million Americans purchase their own health insurance instead of relying upon employers.

Hickenlooper is one of five governors scheduled to testify before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. The meeting starts at 9 a.m. in Washington, which is 7 a.m. in Denver and will be carried online via streaming by clicking here.

Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Denver, serves on the committee.

Hickenlooper is expected to be joined Thursday by Govs. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts, Steve Bullock of Montana, Bill Haslam of Tennessee and Gary Herbert of Utah.

His testimony is part of a series of hearings the Senate is holding after the recent failure of Republican efforts to repeal and replace former President Barack Obama’s health care law.

Under the plan Hickenlooper developed with Ohio’s Republican Gov. John Kasich with support from six other governors, the Obamacare requirement for Americans to buy health insurance would remain.

However, Hickenlooper suggests that Congress develop tax exemptions for insurers that offer health plans in underserved counties.

He also wants Congress to set up a fund to help states create reinsurance programs that could reduce insurance premiums.

Tom Ramstack

Tom Ramstack