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The House voted by a 121-12 margin to pass legislation that will salvage the General Assistance Medical Care program, allowing roughly 35,000 poor single adults to keep their health insurance. The bill previously cleared the Senate by a similarly lopsided margin and ratifies an agreement reached with Gov. Tim Pawlenty earlier this month to save the program.

GAMC bill easily clears House

Paul Thissen

Paul Thissen

The House voted by a 121-12 margin to pass legislation that will salvage the General Assistance Medical Care program, allowing roughly 35,000 poor single adults to keep their health insurance. The bill previously cleared the Senate by a similarly lopsided margin and ratifies an agreement reached with Gov. Tim Pawlenty earlier this month to save the program.

Some Democrats had suggested in recent days that the agreement should be scrapped owing to the passage of the federal health care package. They argued that the current agreement to save GAMC unfairly hurts hospitals, particularly in rural areas, by slashing reimbursement rates.

But ultimately only 12 DFLers voted to walk away from the deal. Almost all of the dissenters represent outstate districts. One notable exception: Rep. Paul Thissen, DFL-Minneapolis, who is running for governor. All Republicans voted for the measure.


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