(FOX News) — Those familiar with the process, even from the other side of the aisle, told Fox News “this is how things get done.” But the sweeteners are reminiscent of the wheeling and dealing then-Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., did to pass ObamaCare, which Republicans criticized at the time.
And just as critics used nicknames like the “Cornhusker Kickback” to blast those ObamaCare add-ons, some are doing the same for the special provisions tucked into the ObamaCare overhaul.
Get ready to hear howls about what critics dub the “Polar Payoff” (for Alaska GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski ); “Bayout Bailout” (for Louisiana GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy ); and “Sunshine Sellout” (for Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio ).
These provisions were added in an effort to win over votes from these senators, Capitol Hill sources told Fox News.
They are as follows:
- Polar Payoff — The revised legislation requires that 1 percent of funds meant to ‘stabilize’ the insurance market are available to states “where the cost of insurance premiums are at least 75 percent higher than the national average,” sources told Fox News. Alaska is the only state that meets this benchmark under the new legislation and would receive $1.82 billion over the next eight years, sources said.
- Bayou Bailout — Louisiana and Alaska — and potentially other states — would benefit from this sweetener. The provision, a major selling point for Cassidy, would tweak the formula so that states that were late to expand Medicaid could get more funding.
- Sunshine Sellout — Sources said this provision was meant to benefit Rubio’s Florida. The tweak would change the way funding is calculated under the “Disproportionate Share Hospital” program, resulting in more money for Florida.
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