Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christie won't set up state-based health exchange

Big 2016 moment here, as NJ Gov. Chris Christie rejects a state-based exchange for New Jersey, Elise Viebeck reports.

In a statement, Christie said New Jersey would default to a federally run exchange because the Obama administration did not provide enough information on alternatives. He also said an exchange would be "extraordinarily costly" for the state in spite of massive federal grants to build it.

"We will comply with the Affordable Care Act, but only in the most efficient and cost effective way for New Jersey taxpayers," Christie said in a statement.

"I will not ask New Jerseyans to commit today to a state-based exchange when the federal government cannot tell us what it will cost, how that cost compares to other options, and how much control they will give the states over this option that comes at the cost of our state’s taxpayers."

This has become one of the first, big tests for 2016 GOP prospects who are governors, and Christie joins Bobby Jindal, Scott Walker, John Kasich in opting out of a state-based exchange.

Susana Martinez is moving toward it, but wants more information before making a final decision, while Bob McDonnell is also waiting for more information.