Democrats push for two changes in light of SCOTUS rulings on Obamacare and gay marriage
By Larry Lee, WSAU Radio
 
MADISON, Wis. (WSAU) -- The Wisconsin Democrats are viewing last week's Supreme Court decisions as a prime opportunity to push for two of their priorities. One: They want to remove the ban against gay marriage from the State Constitution, which was adopted 9 years ago. Two: They are again prompting Governor Scott Walker and the Republicans to accept the additional federal Obamacare dollars to expand BadgerCare.
 
State Representative JoCasta Zamarripa of Milwaukee is co-sponsoring a measure to repeal the amendment banning gay marriage, which was adopted by voters in 2006. The amendment has been unenforceable for the past year, following a federal court ruling that overturned the ban, she says it's time to change the language.  "That would begin the process of removing the discriminatory language around banning same-sex marriage, which continues to tarnish our state's Constitution."
 
Assistant Minority Leader Katrina Shankland of Stevens Point has been urging Walker and the majority Republicans to take the federal Medicaid expansion dollars to support BadgerCare for over a year. She says the Supreme Court's ruling on subsidies for states without their own exchanges means the Affordable Care Act is here to stay, and the Governor should no longer worry about the federal money drying up over the years. "This presents a golden opportunity now that the Affordable Care Act has been affirmed as Constitutional by the Supreme Court two times, it's time to for my Republican colleagues in Wisconsin to do the right thing and accept the BadgerCare money to expand BadgerCare."
 
Shankland says taking the federal dollars that are available through Obamacare to expand BadgerCare would save Wisconsin over 360 million dollars over two years, and billions over the next decade, so this isn't just a wise move, it's also a good economic move.