Archive for Thursday, November 21, 2013

Democrats urge expansion of Medicaid in Kansas

November 21, 2013


— Democrats on Thursday urged Republican leaders in Kansas to change course and expand Medicaid to cover 100,000 Kansans.

"There is no justification for continuing to block Medicaid expansion," said Josh Earnest, White House Principal Deputy Press Secretary.

He was joined in a telephone news conference with state Rep. Barbara Ballard, D-Lawrence, who serves on the House Appropriations Committee.

"We have constituents that need this insurance," Ballard said.

Under the Affordable Care Act, states can expand the income eligibility limits for Medicaid, the government-funded health coverage for low-income people. Under the reform law, the federal government would pay for the expansion for three years, and no less than 90 percent after that.

Twenty-six states have expanded, but most states headed by Republican governors, such as Kansas, haven't.

Brownback and Republican legislative leaders oppose the ACA. During debate on the issue during the 2013 legislative session, Republicans said they feared the federal government wouldn't fulfill its funding commitment because of ongoing budget problems.

But Earnest said the federal commitment is solid. "This is a really good deal for the state of Kansas," he said. He said he hoped governors would "put the interests of their states ahead of politics," and that President Obama's administration is willing to negotiate with individual states about different approaches to expanding health coverage.

Ballard and Earnest said they understand there is frustration with the recent glitch-plagued rollout of the ACA website, but they said the expansion of Medicaid has gone smoothly.

Facing a large Republican majority in the Legislature, Ballard said expanding Medicaid in Kansas will be difficult. But Ballard added, "We can't lose sight of the fact that 100,000 people who are uninsured today could gain access and coverage by 2016." The question becomes, "Why are we not giving these Kansans the insurance that they need," she said.


Grégoire Guillaume 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Who do you think pays for the 100,000 un-insured Kansans when they go the the ER? How can anyone try to defend the present system that leaves so many out in the cold? I've got mine and if you don't have yours it's probably because your a lazy looser. This country has definitely lost it's moral compass. The greed and indifference to our fellow citizens is a sure sign that we're a sad caricature of those who founded this country. All that being said, of course you expand Medicaid because it's the right thing to do.


4 months, 3 weeks ago

Wait, the Democrats want to EXPAND a government program? Never would have figured that.


Michael Shaw 4 months, 3 weeks ago

There is no valid argument for refusing to accept these funds. That is the heart of the matter.


Leslie Swearingen 4 months, 3 weeks ago

We are all of us brothers and sisters of the same Creator and we must react to each other with open hearts, not closed fists. When Peter asked Jesus how many times he was supposed to forgive someone, he said, seven times seventy, as to him that was a preposterous number. No, answered the Teacher. As many times as necessary.


Richard Heckler 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Bring those federal tax $$$$$ home to the taxpayers. These ALEC republicans are misleading Kansas taxpayers 24/7.

Turning Medicaid over to the medical insurance industry is a perfect example of pork barrel spending and complete disregard for fiscal responsibility.

The Medical Insurance Industry aka home to junk medical insurance coverage.


George Lippencott 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Such meaningful dialogue. Tell me why the super rich pay about 40% on part of their income and less on dividends/capital gains and tax free bonds?

Maybe if we taxed them we might have more money for the "poor". Of course those super rich meet with Obama in closed sessions in California to make sure they never get taxed fairly.


George Lippencott 4 months, 4 weeks ago

I think it is great that someone wants to expand Medicare in Kansas to un-served populations. That written, exactly who is to pay for this as the federal programs ends in three years and we have to pick up or normal tab (ABOUT 50%).

How about everybody gets to pay and additional 1% in state taxes with essentially no deductions/adjustments - everybody.


Michael LoBurgio 4 months, 4 weeks ago

Brownback (Kansas) Turns Medicaid Over to Private Companies.. and these are the results

Kansas' most vulnerable now have even less health care, thanks to Gov. Brownback

Past the doorway to Finn Bullers' Prairie Village home are framed photos from his wedding day in 1994. There's Bullers, wearing his suit, standing upright and proud, smiling with a head full of strawberry-blond hair.

On this late-October day, Bullers is in his kitchen. The 49-year-old man's smile remains, but almost everything else has changed since he said, "I do." His body has been wracked by Charcot-Marie-Tooth, a form of muscular dystrophy. (He also suffers from type 1 diabetes.) His hair is gone, replaced by a flat cap. He's in a wheelchair, no longer able to stand. He can move his arms well enough to operate a phone and his iPad, but his hands have morphed through muscle loss to resemble claws, and he cannot make precise movements.

Bullers' voice, once clear, now sounds like gasps for air against the steady in-and-out of a ventilator helping him breathe.


Brock Masters 4 months, 4 weeks ago

The WH wouldn't lie would they?

If you like your health insurance plan you can keep it. Period.

Nope they wouldn't lie.


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