ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Republicans are bringing Democrats back to the mat to save a public health care program for tens of thousands of low-income Minnesota residents.

The Republican-controlled House is moving to abolish MinnesotaCare by 2016 and push its 90,000 enrollees to buy private coverage on the health insurance exchange. That cut is likely the centerpiece of a health and human services budget bill as GOP lawmakers seek to build up $2 billion in tax relief.

It's unclear how much it would save the state. The Dellwood Republican says the state needs to get control of its health care costs.

Democrats fought off an attempt in 2005 to remove 20,000 or more enrollees from MinnesotaCare. Gov. Mark Dayton says cutting the program while the state has a large surplus is cruel.