Some Democrats who appeared today at a U.S. House hearing on Medicaid reform said the hearing should have been postponed.[@@]
Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, chairman of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee, scheduled the hearing before Hurricane Katrina struck. Committee members had ample opportunity to ask for a delay, Barton said.
But several Democrats used references to Katrina in attacks on the main proposal being debated, which they said would cut $10 billion from Medicaid benefits.
Rep. Janice Schakowsky, D-Ill., said the benefit cuts would have an effect comparable to the effect of the failure to reinforce the levees in New Orleans.