Monday, March 3, 2014

Oppose Medicaid Expansion

The following release is from State Senator Richard Black:

"The debate over adding 400,000 additional people to Medicaid continues in Richmond. Governor McAuliffe has threatened to punish those who stand in the way of this massive welfare expansion. I will not support the proposal presented in the Senate Finance Committee, which proponents claim would capture federal funding to expand Medicaid under Obamacare. The plan contains elements that distinguish it from a direct and immediate expansion of Medicaid, but those differences do not mitigate its underlying effect: the full and complete implementation of Obamacare in Virginia.

By growing at a rate twice as fast as government overall, Medicaid has taken an ever-increasing share of taxpayer dollars. The unsustainable rate of growth threatens core government services. Expanding the program implements Obamacare in Virginia, which I find unacceptable.

Obamacare offers nothing of value to hard-working Americans. Cancelled insurance plans, skyrocketing premiums, and outrageous deductibles have become all too familiar to the thousands of Virginians who are dealing with the upheaval caused by this law. Encouraging its implementation by expanding Medicaid is foolhardy.

This deceptive measure will be embedded into Senate Bill 30, the Senate's version of the Commonwealth's biennial budget. That unnecessarily endangers the entire budget process. The leaders of the House of Delegates and its Appropriations Committee have repeatedly voiced emphatic opposition to Medicaid expansion. If the Senate makes Virginia's full implementation of Obamacare a condition for approving a biennial budget, the prospects for the General Assembly approving a budget are dramatically diminished.

I will vote against Medicaid expansion. Since its enactment in 1965, Medicaid has become one of the most corrupt and bloated programs in our nation's history. Expanding it by 40% will multiply the drain of tax dollars and put Virginia's fiscal health in jeopardy. I will not destroy what was once the world's finest healthcare system."

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