Williamsburg, Va, 20 May 2020: Senate Republican Leader Thomas K. Norment, Jr. (R-James City), Caucus Chairman Ryan T. McDougle (R-Hanover), Caucus Co-Chairman Mark D. Obenshain (R-Rockingham), Caucus Whips William M. Stanley, Jr. (R-Franklin) and Bryce E. Reeves (R-Spotsylvania), and Republican Leader Pro-Tempore Stephen D. Newman (R-Bedford) today issued the following statement in response to Governor Northam’s vetoes of Senate Bills 235 and 861:
“Governor Northam today reaffirmed his commitment to a government-only, ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to healthcare coverage for Virginians.
“By vetoing Senate Bills 235 and 861, the Governor has once again prevented thousands of Virginians from accessing more affordable healthcare coverage through professional associations.
“These bills enjoyed widespread, bipartisan support. Senate Bill 235 passed the Senate unanimously and won the support of all but three members of the House of Delegates. The support for this legislation was so strong, Senator Barker was able to achieve a veto-proof ‘passed in enrolled form’ vote of 35 to 5 in the Senate during Reconvened Session.
“While other states now offer their residents relief from the exorbitant costs of obtaining insurance through Obamacare exchanges, Governor Northam insists on condemning Virginians to the outrageous premiums and unaffordable out-of-pocket expenses featured in exchange plans.
“While Republican senators have sponsored similar legislation in previous years, Senators Barker and Mason carried these bills this year. But as in previous years, Governor Northam has vetoed legislation that would make ACA-compliant healthcare coverage more affordable and accessible.
“When the General Assembly reconvenes, whether in special or regular session, these bills must be resubmitted. In times like these, Virginians deserve more, not fewer, options to obtain affordable healthcare coverage.”