This is one example of why there’s resentment sometimes toward the Twin Cities from rural Minnesota.
A group of 15 rural Minnesota Senators who had voted to pass an ultimately vetoed attempt to reform and continue the General Assistance Medical Care program ended up opposing a second try, even though it passed easily Thursday.
That bill had passed the Senate 47-16, and an override of Pawlenty’s veto passed the Senate on a 45-21 vote, only to fall a few votes shy of success in the House of Representatives.
But 15 rural Minnesota Senators who voted yes then voted no this time over concerns that the bill only helps larger hospitals with more GAMC patients, largely in the Twin Cities.
The revised bill only compensates 17 hospitals which have more than $1.5 million in annual GAMC patient care per year. Smaller hospitals can apply for GAMC payments down the road but will have to eat the entire cost of treating the poor for now.
The 15 Senators who flipped were:
Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook
Lisa Fobbe, DFL-Princeton
Paul Koering, R-Fort Ripley
Keith Langseth, DFL-Glyndon
Steve Murphy, DFL-Red Wing
Rick Olseen, DFL-Harris
Mary Olson, DFL-Bemidji
Yvonne Prettner Solon, DFL-Duluth
Ann Rest, DFL-New Hope
Tom Saxhaug, DFL-Grand Rapids
Kathy Sheran, DFL-Mankato
Rod Skoe, DFL-Clearbrook
Dan Skogen, DFL-Hewitt
Dan Sparks, DFL-Austin
Jim Vickerman, DFL-Tracy
They were more than outmatched, however, by Twin Cities-oriented DFL senators who got theirs, and the addition of Republican Senators who had voted against the first bill but supported the second one’s reduced price tag.