Skubick: Lines drawn in Capitol over senior retirement care benefits

LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – The newly elected House Democratic leader from East Lansing has a warning to House Republicans and the governor when it comes to asking senior citizens to pay more for their retirement health care benefits.

Rep. Sam Singh is saying, don’t do it now.

“They want to go after senior health care benefits in the last nine days of lame duck,” says Rep. Singh.

Is this the next confrontation between labor and business and Democrats and Republicans like the right to work battle?

Republican efforts are now underway to ask senior citizens to contribute more to their health care benefits.

The newly elected Republican Speaker Rep. Tom Leonard is circulating about 30 bills that would address the solvency of the retirement health care fund.

The governor argues without state action the fund will eventually run out of money.

The newly-elected House Democratic leader says he is willing to have a long-term conversation about the Health Care Fund but more time is needed to do that. “To go after these senior benefits is not the right thing to do.”

And he advises the governor to stand up to the House Republican caucus and stop this movement from being jammed through the lame duck session. “My hope is that he would actually stand up and say these benefits mean something and they should not be jammed through in the last minute.”

The governor’s office is working on this issue but he’s in China and has not addressed the timing of this debate.

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