Virginia: Virginia Legislature blocks Medicaid Expansion….for now
Late last night, after a great deal of pressure from Campaign for Liberty members, the Virginia Legislature passed a budget that does not include Medicaid expansion as part of the budget. Campaign for Liberty members in Virginia should stay tuned, however, as Medicaid expansion could, and likely will, be brought up again in a future session. From The Washington Post:
The budget plan calls for holding most state spending at current levels to account for a projected budget shortfall. The rival budget plans produced by the House and Senate during the regular General Assembly session were both more flush, with extra money for state employee pay raises, universities, hospitals and K-12 education.
But those plans died when legislators failed to strike a budget deal before the regular session concluded March 8. McAuliffe, Senate Democrats and three moderate Republicans in that chamber support expanding health-care coverage to as many as 400,000 uninsured Virginians. The GOP-dominated House is firmly opposed, questioning whether Washington can afford to keep its promise to pick up most of the $2 billion-a-year tab.
State budget officials said the cause of the shortfall was primarily a miscalculation of capital gains tax revenue; forecasters misinterpreted a one-time spike, triggered by an anticipated change in federal tax policy, as a long-term rise that they could count on in the current budget and beyond.
In response to Sen. A. Donald McEachin, D-Henrico who called the vote “immoral,” is it not immoral to trap people in a system where they cannot find a doctor and have worse health outcomes than individuals without health insurance?