FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE January 22, 2019
Contact: Representative Ron Tusler (608) 266-5831
Rep. Tusler Votes for Healthcare Protections, Reacts to Governor’s Comments
Madison, WI – Today, Representative Ron Tusler (R-Harrison) voted to ensure Wisconsinites with pre-existing medical conditions cannot be denied health insurance coverage. This vote came hours before Governor Tony Evers addressed a joint session of the Wisconsin State Legislature.
Assembly Bill 1, the Pre-Existing Condition Guaranteed Coverage Act, contains three main consumer-protection components. First, the bill prohibits those with a pre-existing medical condition from being denied health insurance coverage. Second, the bill would bar healthcare providers from denying services required to treat a condition. Finally, the bill prevents insurance companies from charging higher premiums based on an individual’s medical condition or health status. Wisconsin would become one of only five states that offers all three protections.
“Covering patients with pre-existing conditions is personal to me,” said Rep. Tusler. “My mother passed away after a twenty-two year battle with cancer. If she didn’t have access to treatment and care she would have missed graduations, weddings, and the birth of her granddaughter. Passing this bill ensures that those who need care will get it and hopefully, as a result, families will have their loved ones around for as many birthdays and milestones as possible.”
The bill passed the Assembly 76-19. It now goes to the Senate for approval before onto the Governor.
Hours later, the Governor came to the Assembly to address a joint session of the legislature. In his remarks, the Governor said there is “work to do,” and he is “ready for bipartisan solutions.” Rep. Tusler responded:
“While there is always room for improvement, the state of the State is not as grim as some would make it out to be. I was glad to hear Governor Evers pay homage to the strong position Governor Walker left Wisconsin in for him. Over the past eight years thousands of individuals and families have benefited from newly created jobs, lower taxes, broadband expansion initiatives, and aid to replace lead-lined water pipes. There’s always room for improvement, but Wisconsin is not in shambles by any stretch of the imagination.
“I am encouraged by the Governor’s comments on lowering taxes and guaranteeing coverage for individuals with pre-existing conditions. Just today the Assembly passed the Pre-Existing Condition Guaranteed Coverage Act which achieves the health insurance and care protections goals we all strive for. Similarly, Assembly Republicans introduced a proposal last week that will cut taxes for middle class Wisconsinites by ten percent, without raising taxes, as the Governor proposed tonight. I look forward to working with him in these areas, and others, where there is common ground to keep Wisconsin on a successful path and achieve greater prosperity.”
A video of Rep. Tusler's reaction to Governor Evers' comments can be found here.