Democratic lawmakers said they would not participate on a commission that is supposed to recommend how to trim Medicaid by $10 billion over five years. HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt has said he will appoint up to 15 voting members and 15 nonvoting members. Congressional Republicans were invited to designate four lawmakers as nonvoting members and Democrats were invited to do the same. Sen. Harry Reid, the Democratic leader in the Senate, and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic leader in the House, said that they would not accept an advisory role for lawmakers rather than a voting role. "Unfortunately, the partisan nature of the commission and the lack of voting rights are not our only reasons for refusing to appoint members," they said in a prepared statement. "We fundamentally disagree with the premise that this commission should make recommendations on how to cut Medicaid outlays by $10 billion by Sept. 1." Senior Democrats on the congressional committees overseeing Medicaid also declined to participate on the commission. -- by the Associated Press
Democrats say they won't be part of Medicaid commission
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