Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Pennsylvania Medicaid Expansion and Legislature Polarization

Where the States Stand
Via: The Advisory Board Company

The Fiscal Year (FY) begins every July 1 in every state, the Federal FY begins October 1.  This year the legislature passed and the governor signed a $28.4 billion budget.  The Republican controlled State Senate voted 40-10 to include Medicaid (sponsored by House Republican Dan Moul of Adams and Franklin county) expansion in the budget (where the federal government would pick up 100% of the tab for the first two years and could cover 700,000 of the state's 1.2 million uninsured).  These Republicans joined all Senate Democrats in voting yea:

Baker
Browne
Corman
Erickson
Greenleaf
Gordner
Mensch
Pileggi
Rafferty
Scarnati
Smucker
Tomlinson
Vogel
Waugh
Yaw


However the House voted 108-94 to remove and recommit this amendment (with Rep. Moul voting yea) to the Public Welfare Code with Gov. Corbett still declaring his opposition.  All Democrats plus two Republicans (DiGirolamo and Harkins) voted nay.  

The Pennsylvania Health Access Network promises that the battle is not over.  Their arguments for Medicaid expansion are very similar to those for Single Payer.  If some Republican legislators can be persuaded to vote for Medicaid expansion, maybe they can on Single Payer.

A study has been published looking at the amount of polarization in each state legislature in the US compared to Congress.  This vote is a case where there was more crossing over in the Senate than in the House.  Pennsylvania's was somewhat less polarized than the US Congress. 

**Update**

MSNBC's Chris Hayes has a profile on Gov. Corbett and an interview with the head of the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics.

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**Related Posts** 

Medicaid Expansion Update

Legislature Polarization and Single Payer Prospects

PA Governor Corbett at a Crossroads

National, State, & County Uninsured Estimates