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Colorado Democrats Push to Restore Medicaid, Education Funding

At the state capitol, house lawmakers are expected to debate Colorado's $18 billion budget into the evening with Democrats planning to offer amendments on everything from Medicaid to education funding.The state senate already voted to support the budget and Governor Hickenlooper says he’s on board with it in its current form.   But Democratic lawmakers in the house are offering dozens of amendments to the bill to try and restore funding for Medicaid programs, education and corrections, among other things.


While those measures will likely spark passionate debate, they won't be the most contentious fights of the day.  Those are expected to surround bills that would cut the state budget. For instance, Democrats largely oppose a measure that would exempt agriculture products such as pesticides as well as and downloaded software from sales taxes.

Those bills were part of a budget compromise between leaders in the Republican controlled house and Democratic controlled senate.

Debate could last late into the night or early morning, especially as the house is planned to break this afternoon for a legislative open house for the public.

Bente Birkeland has been reporting on state legislative issues for KUNC and Rocky Mountain Community Radio since 2006. Originally, from Minnesota, Bente likes to hike and ski in her spare time. She keeps track of state politics throughout the year but is especially busy during the annual legislative session from January through early May.