Virginia Democrats respond to McDonnell budget amendments
Gov. Bob McDonnell unveiled his proposed amendments to the biennial budget on Monday, and Democrats in the Virginia General Assembly responded, raising issue with his proposal to divert state funds from schools and first responders to pay for his transportation plan.
Democratic Party of Virginia Chair Charniele Herring said it is “critical that we focus on a pragmatic approach to sustain Virginia’s future as the best place to live, work and raise a family.”
“The governor’s budget fails to address some of the Commonwealth’s core priorities. Raiding money from education to fund transportation not only fails to address the need for Virginia’s roads and infrastructure but diverts much-needed funds away from Virginia students,” Herring said.
Senate Democratic Caucus Chair Donald McEachin highlighted what he termed the “unconscionable” decision of McDonnell not to include funding for the expansion of Medicaid.
“Expanding Medicaid will provide essential health care to hard-working Virginians who are struggling to support families as well as create jobs. In the upcoming General Assembly session, I hope to work with my collegues in the legislature to grow jobs and improve health care for Virginians by expanding Medicaid,” McEachin said.
“Gov. McDonnell had the opportunity to make a substantial investment in Virginia’s diverse and growing health care economy,” said House Democratic Caucus Mark Sickles. “McDonnell’s failure to address routine health care for over 400,000 Virginians is irresponsible and counterproductive. I look forward to working with members of the General Assembly over the next few months to expand access to Medicaid and affordable health care for Virginia seniors and working poor.”