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'CannonCare' faces big lift

Tomorrow, the full House takes up Rep. Dean Cannon's plan to turn Jeb Bush's Medicaid Reform plan into a new super-duper program that reduces government paperwork and puts everyone in Medicaid in managed care.

Cannon's sometime rival Ron Saunders, D-Key West, has a nickname for the plan: "CannonCare."

It was born out of a just-completed briefing in the House Majority office where even Republican members were tad bit concerned. Off-the-reservation Rep. Ed Homan, a doctor, wondered how the plan would work and chafed at the mandates on providers.

"We're doing ObamaCare in Florida with this," Homan, R-Tampa said. "Here we're Republicans. We're supposed to believe in the free market."

Rep. Denise Grimsley, R-Lake Placid, a nurse who helped shape the plan, pointed out "There is no free market in health care." Otherwise, she said, the government would have to lift myriad mandates, such as so-called "certificates of need" approving health providers.

"I like the sound of that," said Rep. Alan Hayes, R-Umatilla. He, too, wondered how the plan would attract more providers while expanding the role of HMOs, whom providers generally loathe.

With questions like that, expect the Senate to do its own chafing. More tomorrow.