There is a huge political divide in the Capitol tonight as Senate Republicans took swift action to lower your no-fault insurance rates, but a majority of Senate Democrats counter that only the insurance companies will benefit and not motorists.
Both parties agree that the state’s no-fault system needs reform and they agree Michigan motorists need rate relief but there the agreement ends.
Two Detroit Democrats joined 22 Republicans to pass the plan, which Democratic leader Sen. Jim Ananich argues helps insurance companies, but not you.
“This guarantees insurance companies will have more profits in their pockets and we have to hope that we get it back,” claims the senator. “I didn’t come here to hope.”
Here’s what the Republicans did. They give you a choice: you can purchase cheaper insurance to cover an accident and injuries or you can keep the state’s mandatory and more expensive catastrophic health care coverage.
Republican sponsor Sen. Aric Nesbitt says the savings would be real.
“Folks will be able to save 15 – 20 percent and upwards of 70-80 percent depending on your coverage.”
So is the senator promising savings? He says, “Oh, absolutely.”
Most of the Democrats were not buying that promise.
“We want the savings to be mandatory,” insists Sen. Ananich. “Insurance companies get the savings and put it in their pockets.”
Senator Ananich wanted the Republicans to put the cost savings in writing because he does not trust insurance companies to rebate savings to you.
Senator Nesbitt says, it is in writing. “They are in writing. They are right in there and there are significant savings in the bill.”
Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson contends families could go bankrupt if they don’t have the life-long mandatory health care coverage
But Republican Sen. Lana Theis says once you get rid of that mandatory coverage, Medicare will cover the costs. “So when insurance is no longer paying, Medicare picks it up.”
The measure now goes to the House for more debate.