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Democrats: Haley, GOP legislators should drop out of state health-care plan

Feb 23, 2011 3:13:00 PM - thestate.com
A group of S.C. Senate Democrats today criticized Gov. Nikki Haley and other Republicans for their efforts to overturn the new federal health-care law while, at the same time, accepting state-subsidized health-care coverage for themselves. "Republicans are happily participating in a government-run, taxpayer-funded health care," said state Sen. Brad Hutto, D-Orangeburg, during a press conference. "Let me repeat: Each Republican legislator railing against government health care has government health care. ... The taxpayers are footing their bill to the tune of up to $8,341.20 per legislator." Going forward, the Democratic senators say they will offer an amendment to allow legislators to opt out of the state’s insurance plan each time Republicans offer bills to block the federal health-care law. Republican lawmakers said there is a big difference between a federal health-care plan that requires every person to have health-care coverage and the state of South Carolina providing health care to its employees, as some companies do. Legislators are part-time state employees. Haley said she will continue to fight the federal health-care law, ignoring Democrats' jabs. "I am just not going to play in their political sandbox," she said.