Jeb Bush, a top presidential prospect in 2016, expressed skepticism about the Medicaid expansion during an interview with CNN Tuesday, but misstated the cost of the expansion.
According to CNN, Bush responded to a question about Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s support for expansion by questioning the program’s cost:
“I have doubts because I think if three years from now, as I understand it, three or four years from now, the deal is that the fed match goes from 95 back to what it is now, which is about 55 in Florida,” Bush said.
“It’s been my experience that it’s been hard to tell people that once they’ve gotten some benefits, ‘Sorry you can’t have it now,'” he continued.
In fact, as CNN noted, the federal government covers 100% of the cost of the expansion during the first three years and gradually reduces its contribution to 90 percent in 2020 and beyond. That’s much more than the 55 percent level Bush indicated.
In his new book, Bush offered up a different reason to oppose the expansion, calling it “welfare” for the children of illegal immigrants.