SPRINGFIELD, IL (AP) - The top Republican in the Illinois House says he won't go along with Gov. Pat Quinn's call for higher cigarette taxes to help the state's struggling Medicaid program.
Minority Leader Tom Cross says House Republicans oppose "any tax increase to solve our Medicaid crisis."
Cross noted that the Democratic governor said in his budget address that the state needs to reduce Medicaid expenditures and didn't mention a tax increase. Cross said he'll hold Quinn to his word.
Quinn on Thursday offered a plan for closing a $2.7 billion hole in Medicaid, which provides health care for the poor. His proposal includes removing 215,000 from the program, cutting many services, reducing payments to providers and raising cigarette taxes by $1 a pack.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)