GOP States Give Up $423 Billion By Rejecting Medicaid Expansion

Members of the Republican Governors Association, from left, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Gov. Texas Gov. Rick Perry, North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple and Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead, speak during a press conference about ... Members of the Republican Governors Association, from left, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Gov. Texas Gov. Rick Perry, North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple and Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead, speak during a press conference about Environmental Protection Agency regulations on Monday, June 16, 2014, in Houston. The EPA recently released new rules designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions from existing coal-fired power plants. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan) MORE LESS
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The 24 states which refused to expand Medicaid under Obamacare are poised to give up $423.6 billion in federal funds over a decade and keep 6.7 million residents uninsured, according to a new study by the Urban Institute and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

“In the 24 states that have not expanded Medicaid, 6.7 million residents are projected to remain uninsured in 2016 as a result. These states are foregoing $423.6 billion in federal Medicaid funds from 2013 to 2022, which will lessen economic activity and job growth,” the authors wrote.

This chart comes via the Urban/RWJF study:

The non-expansion states — which include high-population Texas and Florida — feature Republican governors or legislators (or both) who blocked the federal funds. The expansion, initially required by Obamacare, was made optional by the Supreme Court. It covers residents up to 133 percent of the federal poverty line with a low price for states; Washington pays the full cost for the first three years and 90 percent thereafter.

Since September 2013 the number of uninsured fell by 38 percent in expansion states and just 9 percent in non-expansion states, the study found.

Democrats on the state and federal level widely support expansion; some GOP governors (like New Jersey’s Chris Christie and Arizona’s Jan Brewer) have adopted it. Other Republicans (like Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal and Texas’s Rick Perry) have sided with conservative activists who pushed aggressively to persuade state leaders to reject the Medicaid funds. Elsewhere, such as Virginia and Florida, GOP legislators have blocked their governor’s push to expand Medicaid. States have the option to take up expansion in subsequent years.

The study pointed to other economic costs for non-expansion states, notably the higher cost of uncompensated care for hospitals, who are legally required to provide emergency care for patients whether or not they’re insured.

“Hospitals in these 24 states are also slated to lose a $167.8 billion (31 percent) boost in Medicaid funding,” the authors wrote, “that was originally intended to offset major cuts to their Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement.”

Kaiser Family Foundation has the status of Medicaid expansion in each state.

RWJF – Medicaid Study

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Notable Replies

  1. Yes, it’s true that they’re giving up billions of dollars that they’ve already paid in taxes and will never see again, but by doing so, they’re sticking it to the president, which makes it OK.

    This is what passes for logic among Republicans today.

  2. It’s called cutting off your nose to spite your face.

  3. More for the rest of us.

  4. This should be a #1 campaign issue for Democrats in GA. There have been 5 rural hospitals closed this year (that would be mostly WHITE rural areas), yet you dont hear as much about it…which in and of itself is shameful. Do people hate the President that much? Does that hatred or better yet playing like it doesn’t exist and not calling out the haters make us any better as a nation? Democrats (at least in GA) need to grow a pair and start calling it out…because they wont win doing what they are doing now…being a bunch of wusses

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