There's still time...

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There's still time...

Post by T on Wed Jan 22, 2014 2:09 pm

There's still time for the Legislature to expand Medicaid

Steve Michaud of the Maine Hospital Association points out, Maine enthusiastically accepts federal money for highways and bridges, sewage treatment and water systems, and a host of other programs at rates requiring state matches far greater than what’s being asked for MaineCare.

He writes, “If this were an opportunity for federal dollars for a ship at Bath Iron Works or a defense contract or for highways and bridges, we would be jumping at the opportunity and celebrating.” Hospitals, he adds, “see no reason to forgo this level of funding just because it’s health care.”

LePage is unmoved, but in other areas he seems to be rethinking his opposition to just about any kind of government spending.

LePage, or his advisors, may have finally realized that his blockading of the normal channels of state spending, even those explicitly endorsed by the voters, was boomeranging. Maine’s economic performance, rarely robust, has been alarmingly flat throughout the aftermath of the Great Recession.

Not taking the Medicaid dollars to cover the currently uninsured is just asking for trouble, as a number of Republicans governors around the country have finally begun to realize.

It may be too late for Paul LePage to change course. He’s convinced himself that health care for low-income Mainers is “welfare,” and “welfare,” to the governor, is always a bad thing.

Read the whole editorial here


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