State of Wyoming Archives: on Health Care

Merav Ben-David: Strongly supports expanded Medicaid, universal health care

Wyoming should expand Medicaid. In 2019, nearly 54,000 Wyomingites were enrolled in Medicaid and the Children Health Insurance Program - a far cry from the 73,000 who would have been eligible under Medicaid expansion. While some were able to get health insurance through the Affordable Care Act, at least 6,000 were left without access. Leaving people uninsured during the COVID19 pandemic is unconscionable. I will argue forcefully for Universal Health Care.
Source: 2020 Wyoming Senate campaign website Oct 10, 2020

Merav Ben-David: Supports single-payer, universal health care

Ben-David offered her support for a single-payer, universal health care system, arguing the costs of health care will go down "if everybody is part of the (same) system." "The Affordable Care Act is a very good step in ensuring Americans have insurance, but I believe that we need to make sure that everyone has access to health care, including rural states and rural hospitals, and that's why I support a universal, single-payer health care system for the United States."
Source: WY News Exchange on 2020 Wyoming Senate debate Oct 9, 2020

Mark Gordon: Kept state "open for business" during pandemic

We have all kept our states "open for business" and delivered food and other goods Americans need during this pandemic. Like other states, we did have to close pieces of our economies temporarily. To meet this challenge, our states moved quickly to cut red tape and allow private employers to pivot to new business models.

As we move into the next phase of managing the pandemic and consider President Trump's guidelines for "Opening Up America Again," we are applying our propensity for planning to reopen the segments of our economies that temporarily closed. Each of us has identified triggers for when regions of our states and sectors of our economies should reopen, based on metrics tailored to our unique circumstances. We are sharing expertise and best practices on how to safely reopen restaurants, churches, gyms and other businesses while continuing to slow the spread of infection.

Source: WaPo OpEd by 5 governors for 2022 Wyoming gubernatorial race May 5, 2020

Mark Gordon: Improve mental health care; launch in-state suicide hotline

We need to improve mental health care through innovative approaches and coordinating agency policies for a more seamless delivery of services. One area of focus is on the prevention of suicide. This issue struck close to home when I heard from classmates of my own kids who have struggled with these dark thoughts. Too many of our residents are suffering -- and sadly, far too many are acting on it. I have supported funding to launch an in-state suicide hotline.
Source: 2020 State of the State Address to 65th Wyoming legislature Feb 10, 2020

Yana Ludwig: Universal healthcare guarantee; deprivatize health insurance

Healthcare: I propose a universal healthcare guarantee (which needs to include abortion on demand, birth control, mental health services, and full funding of the Veteran's Administration healthcare system). I further favor the deprivatization of health insurance and pharmaceuticals. Finally, marijuana needs to be legalized, people incarcerated for marijuana convictions need to be released and their records for those "offenses" wiped.
Source: Connection on 2020 Wyoming Senate race Sep 9, 2019

Yana Ludwig: Supports birth control and abortion on demand

I propose a universal healthcare guarantee (which needs to include abortion on demand, birth control, mental health services, and full funding of the Veteran's Administration healthcare system). I further favor the deprivatization of health insurance and pharmaceuticals. Finally, marijuana needs to be legalized, people incarcerated for marijuana convictions need to be released and their records for those "offenses" wiped.
Source: Connection on 2020 Wyoming Senate race Sep 9, 2019

Yana Ludwig: Legalize marijuana; wipe out incarceration records

Marijuana needs to be legalized, people incarcerated for marijuana convictions need to be released and their records for those "offenses" wiped.
Source: Connection on 2020 Wyoming Senate race Sep 9, 2019

Mark Gordon: Signed legislation extending Wyoming's health insurance pool

WY HB0007: AN ACT relating to insurance; extending the sunset date for the Wyoming health insurance pool; clarifying the types of health insurance to which the pool applies; amending pool eligibility; removing maximum benefit limitations; amending the entities who provide coverage and benefit related recommendations.

Program summary frm Wyoming Department of Insurance: The Wyoming Health Insurance Pool (WHIP) was created by the 1990 Wyoming Legislature to provide health insurance coverage to residents of Wyoming who are denied adequate health insurance. However, due to the ACA, individuals can no longer be denied traditional health insurance due to their existing medical conditions, thus essentially eliminating the need for the Non-Disabled WHIP plan. [The WHIP pools are an alternative to ObamaCare - Ed.]

: Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 28-1-1 on 2/7/2019; Passed House 57-0-3 on 1/24/2019; Signed by Gov. Gordon; assigned Chapter Number 16 on 02/14/2019.

Source: BillTrack50 on Wyoming legislative voting records: WY HB0007 Feb 14, 2019

Mark Gordon: Craft a state-led course on healthcare

I will support our hometowns as they chart their own courses into the future. Likewise, I will always stand up for Wyoming charting our own course. This is certainly the case with healthcare.

We have been given an opportunity to craft a Wyoming solut

Source: 2019 State of the State address to Wyoming legislature Jan 9, 2019

Bill Dahlin: No Medicaid expansion; let Washington fix it

What about Medicaid Expansion? As it turns out, however you want to trail it, it is a mess.˙ We are probably fortunate that Wyoming did not expand it originally.˙ No one really knows where health care stands at this moment. I do believe we need to take care of each other and find ways to do that from a health stand point.˙ I hope Washington gets it right and we benefit from it in Wyoming.˙ However, government does and should have its limitations.
Source: 2018 Wyoming gubernatorial website Sep 18, 2018

Gary Trauner: Politicians have failed young people on healthcare

Healthcare is a major issue where Trauner feels politicians have failed younger people. "I was surprised how much young people were worried about it, I hadn't thought about it when I was 18-years old," said Trauner.

The national debt as well as student load debt are issues Trauner says concern young people he talks to. "That's a system where kids are coming out $30,000 in debt--that doesn't work."

In this campaign, Trauner has used social media to interact with supporters and non-supporters alike. He does a weekly Facebook Live event where he says every question is answered, even those that may be negative or unfavorable.

Source: Oil City News on 2018 Wyoming Senate race Sep 12, 2018

Mary Throne: Expand Medicaid: a no-brainer answer to cover more people

Honestly shout it from the rooftops: Medicaid expansion is a no brainer to get healthcare for 20k more people, lower premiums for everyone else, and provide better support for our existing rural healthcare systems.
Source: Twitter posting on 2018 Wyoming Gubernatorial race Jun 26, 2018

Gary Trauner: Everyday citizens deserve same health care as Congress gets

Every American should have access to basic, quality health care, not just those who are wealthy or who receive health care coverage through their employer. ˙Every American should have the type of excellent health care insurance options available today to Congress. ˙In addition, our employers should not be making business decisions based on the spiraling cost of providing health care to employees. The current state of health care policy in America is immoral, unacceptable and unsustainable.
Source: 2018 Wyoming Senatorial campaign website Feb 22, 2018

Gary Trauner: Allow importation of lower cost drugs

Trauner stated that the current political system is broken, favoring rich and business interests at the expense of the average individual citizen, that the politics of division is counterproductive and that he is stepping up to make a difference.

On Prescription Drugs--favors importation of lower cost drugs and allowing Medicare/Medicaid to negotiate drug costs.

Source: on 2018 Wyoming Senate race Jan 26, 2018

Charlie Hardy: I am in favor of single-payer health insurance

Q: How would you protect Social Security for today's seniors and strengthen it for future generations?

A: Preventive health care is an essential investment in both our physical and financial health. To better meet these needs I am in favor of single-payer health insurance. I will also do everything in my power to protect Social Security and Medicare.

Source: AARP Voter Guide on 2014 Wyoming Senate race Aug 31, 2014

Charlie Hardy: Health care is an inalienable right

Q: How would you put Medicare on stronger financial ground and protect today's seniors and future retirees from rising health costs?

A: Hardy said no one should be worried about getting sick and that health care is an inalienable right. He would like to reform Medicare to include provision of eyeglasses, hearing aids and dentures at little cost to senior citizens.

Source: AARP Voter Guide on 2014 Wyoming Senate race Aug 31, 2014

Charlie Hardy: ObamaCare is a step in the right direction

Hardy said he wants to focus this campaign on better-paying jobs for workers, health care and affordable housing, among other topics. Hardy said he supports the Affordable Care Act--ObamaCare--and calls it "a step in the right direction," even if it is not perfect. "Health care is a right in my mind," he said.
Source: Powell Tribune coverage of 2014 Wyoming Senate race Mar 18, 2014

Charlie Hardy: There are sick people unable to get medical attention

Quote of the day from Charlie: "There are sick people in Wyoming who are unable to go and get the medical attention they want. There are kids who want to continue their education, but they can't. We must run, and we must win because of all of these things."
Source: 2014 Wyoming Senate campaign website, Feb 18, 2014

Liz Cheney: Can't salvage any of ObamaCare, but costs are out of control

Q: One of the biggest domestic issues facing this country today is health care reform. Do you think Republicans should emphasize their plans?

CHENEY: Yes. We do need to recognize that health care costs are out of control. There is a need for tort reform, to purchase insurance across state lines, and to find ways to insure people with pre-existing conditions. I don't think we can salvage any of ObamaCare, and this disaster must be repealed. I would hope that even this president is having a wake-up call, realizing that the federal government cannot effectively run massive and complicated parts of our economy. Just look at this tax on medical devices. I have a 13-year-old daughter with diabetes that is reliant on a medical device. My father is alive today because of medical devices. Yet the Democrats want a tax that would create a disincentive for people to invent. This is fundamentally wrong.

Source: American Thinker Q-and-A on 2014 Wyoming Senate race Dec 7, 2013

Liz Cheney: Republicans who compromised on ObamaCare got used by Obama

Q: Sen. Enzi voted against ObamaCare, but you say that's not enough. And you point to the fact that he was a member of the so-called "gang of six" who tried to work out a compromise, unsuccessfully. Isn't that what legislating is about?

CHENEY: Legislating is about knowing where to draw the line. Certainly, at some point, we all believe in compromise for the good of the nation. So, when the president or his allies say, "Hey, we're going to take over a sixth of the economy," Sen. Enzi's response was essentially to say, "OK, let's negotiate about that." The right response would have been: absolutely not. And, frankly, if all of the Republicans had done that at the beginning, had stood their ground and refused to compromise on this, we probably wouldn't be where we are today. Instead, you have Republicans like Sen. Enzi who gave the president the ability to say, "Hey, this is a bipartisan effort"--when, in fact, it wasn't. It was never intended to be. And they got used.

Source: Fox News Sunday: Q&A on 2013 Wyoming Senate debate Nov 17, 2013

Liz Cheney: Urge the repeal of ObamaCare

Speaking to small business owners in Casper, she urged the repeal of ObamaCare and its massive tax burden on the private sector. Speaking to the Chamber of Commerce in Cheyenne, she urged that we reverse Obama's dangerous cuts in defense spending, which are weakening our national security and threaten the loss of jobs at important bases like Frances E. Warren AFB.
Source: 2014 Senate campaign website,, "About" Oct 9, 2013

Matt Mead: ObamaCare is law of the land; let's decide on an Exchange

The implementation of the ACA [ObamaCare] and associated costs are looming. Despite my strong objection to the ACA and my asking the Attorney General to fight the case in the U.S. Supreme Court, it is the law of the land. We now have to play the cards in our hand. We have to make decisions regarding Medicaid expansion and insurance exchanges. Last year the discussion on a state-based exchange was suspended. That and a lack of answers from the federal government mean the federal government will likely run an exchange for Wyoming when exchanges start operating in 2014. But a federal exchange could be temporary because we can choose a state exchange down the road. We should make an informed choice; therefore, one of my budget recommendations seeks $100,000 to assist in the process of deciding what exchange option is best for Wyoming.
Source: 2013 State of the State Speech to Wyoming Legislature Jan 9, 2013

Matt Mead: ObamaCare is not good policy; but we must act on it

Addressing health care, Governor Mead said he continues to believe the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is not good policy. "Unfortunately there is no magic wand waving, there is no approach that will extricate us from the ACA. It is upon us and we must act."

Full implementation of the ACA begins in 2014 and Governor Mead said now is the time to prepare a set of conditions for Wyoming to submit to the federal government on a health insurance exchange and Medicaid optional expansion. "This body (the Legislature) has the opportunity to develop what we would like to see in that request. Now, perhaps the federal government will not agree to our terms. We can say no if they do not, but it is far better that we express our terms and make a request than to not make a request and get a package without our input. Let's view this as an opportunity for innovation."

Source: Press Release on 2013 Wyoming State of the State Speech Jan 9, 2013

Matt Mead: Establish litigation fund to join lawsuit against ObamaCare

The federal health care bill may be the best Congress could do--it is not the best we can do. Therefore, I support legislation that would establish a litigation fund related to the federal health care law.

As you no doubt know, I have taken steps to join the Florida lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act. I understand the criticism in doing so--some because they like the Act, some because of the cost associated with the lawsuit.

I do not like the Act--in my view it is bad policy and too costly. This law will significantly increase our Medicaid rolls. Mississippi, for example, forecasts the overall cost to implement the Affordable Care Act in that state will be $1.7 billion over ten years, including $443 million in year 10 alone.

I am willing to fully test the legality of the law because it has implications beyond health care. It is not enough to say "no". We should continue to seek state solutions even as we fight the federal law.

Source: 2011 Wyoming State of the State Address Jan 12, 2011

Dave Freudenthal: Health reform is not creeping socialism; let's try a pilot

Our health reform demonstration project was characterized as creeping socialism, and it dies. I would hope that you will reconsider that. What we are asking people to do--I do not believe it constitutes socialism--is to contribute something to their own health. They have to participate.

In this pilot project, we expect participants to work at least 20 hours per week, and follow their doctor's orders. The project calls for people to have greater access to their primary care physician. What we are looking for are those things that drive the system in terms of cost. We are looking for early detection of diabetes; for early detection of cancer; for early detection of heart disease. With any ailments that can become chronic diseases, we are looking for early detection.

Which part of that is socialism? The part where we ask people to be responsible? The part to pay for their own insurance? The part where we ask people to work? I encourage you to rethink this and take a shot at it.

Source: Wyoming 2010 State of the State Address Feb 8, 2010

Mark Gordon: Competition and personal responsibility, not single-payer

When I started a ranch in Buffalo, we could attract talented people because we could offer health insurance at a reasonable rate. At that time, in the late `80s, maternity coverage was affordable and it covered most of the cost of having a baby. That same coverage today is vastly more expensive and doesn't even really cover the price of a standard delivery. What we offered as a perk has become a financial drain.

To keep small businesses in Wyoming on Main Street and make sure others open we have to address the rising cost of health care. This can be done by allowing individuals to deduct the cost of health insurance from their federal income taxes. Larger corporations already do this and small business owners must be able to benefit as well. We should allow businesses and individuals to pool across state lines to lower overall costs.

The solution does not lie in a single payer system or nationalized health care. Competition and personal responsibility must be part of the solution.

Source: 2008 Wyoming House campaign website Nov 1, 2008

Michael Enzi: Support mental health parity legislation

Comprehensive mental health parity legislation is needed to ensure greater health insurance parity for persons with mental illness. The Senate bill I’ve been working on builds on a 1996 Mental Health Parity law by requiring health insurance plans that offer mental health coverage to provide that coverage on par with financial & treatment coverage offered for other physical illness. It does not mandate that group plans must provide any mental health coverage. I support mental health parity legislation.
Source: 2008 Senate campaign website, Aug 12, 2008

Keith Goodenough: Responsibility to deal with the chronically mentally ill

We have the chronically mentally ill and how do we deal with them? Not near as well as we should for sure. Yes it is a difficult population to help and heal, not at all like mending a broken leg, or giving out a prescription for antibiotics. People without any mental illness are sometimes stubborn and irritating, and some of those who are mentally ill are even more so, but don’t we have a responsibility to create a caring and humane system wherever possible?

Yes, we have that responsibly as a civilized society, but we are falling short. The current approach sometimes seems like that card game “Old Maid”. Because of the governmental system that is based more on budgets than people, mentally ill people get passed around from place to place and never receive the comprehensive network of services they deserve. We pay more in the long run.

Source: Wyoming Tribune Eagle, “Lots of Backslapping After Session” Apr 17, 2005

Tim Chesnut: State-funded access to basic health care

Source: Wyoming 2004 Congressional National Political Awareness Test Nov 1, 2004

Jim Geringer: More funding for prescription drugs & senior care

Wyoming will benefit from our hard work this year to improve care for our elderly. In addition to the expanded funding that I’ve recommended in my budget request for health care services and prescription drugs, I support the proposals developed with your help for long-term care reform, providing seniors with access to assisted living, expanding home based care, re-engineering Medicaid’s arcane administrative details, and giving seniors a boost to their personal needs allowance.
Source: 2001 State of the State Address to Wyoming Legislature Jan 10, 2001

  • The above quotations are from State of Wyoming Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Health Care:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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