POLITICO's Pulse Check

The (possible) Medicaid expansion next door

Episode Summary

If Virginia expands Medicaid, more than 300,000 uninsured residents could get covered. A top state Democrat explains the path ahead.

Episode Notes

When the Affordable Care Act was first signed into law, the state of Virginia led the fight against it. Eight years later, Virginia — with state Democrats on the upswing — is on the verge of expanding Medicaid, and more than 300,000 state residents could get covered as a result.

First, POLITICO reviews the windy road that led to 32 states saying yes to Medicaid expansion. Then Del. Alfonso Lopez, the whip for Virginia House Democrats, explains what's ahead as he and his colleagues work to finalize a Medicaid expansion deal. (Starts at the 8:20 mark.)

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Referenced on the podcast:

Virginia Republicans said the backlash to Medicaid expansion has been milder than expected: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/republican-medicaid-expanders-in-va-say-backlash-is-milder-than-expected/2018/03/29/dde9e0fc-329d-11e8-94fa-32d48460b955_story.html

The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis is arguing the benefits of Medicaid expansion in Virginia: http://thehalfsheet.org/post/172599067503/evidence-shows-medicaid-expansion-is-not-a-budget