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article imageMichigan GOP Gov. Rick Snyder campaigning on support of Obamacare

By John Presta     Oct 2, 2014 in Politics
East Lansing - Michigan Governor Rick Snyder is touting the fact that 63,000 more low-income adults have signed onto the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion program than had previously been projected. Snyder is a Republican and running for reelection on Nov. 4.
Such talk is highly unusual in this era of partisan politics. But it is true. Since last April when the Medicaid expansion commenced in Michigan, through this past Monday, 385,000 have enrolled, surpassing the original projection of 322,000. "At that level, we're adding 9,000 patients a day," said Snyder, who made the remarks at an endorsement event at the Michigan State Medical Society, an East Lansing-based professional association of physicians.
Yes, doctors like the Medicaid expansion and as do hospitals. In fact, in the states that have yet to opt-in the Medicaid expansion, the doctors associations and hospital associations are applying political pressure to their predominantly Republican governors and state legislatures, which are also also predominantly Republican. Take the state of Georgia, for example, which is one of the reddest of red-states.
In spite of the fact that Georgia Republican Gov. Nathan Deal has ruled out the Medicaid expansion to provide health care to more low-income Georgians, because he says it is too costly even though the federal government will cover all of the cost the first three years. 90 percent of the cost thereafter. The more than 7,000-member Medical Association of Georgia recently voted to endorse the Medicaid expansion.
Georgia Hospital Association, through a spokesman said that a larger Medicaid program is critical. “We need Medicaid expansion in the state,” the spokesperson told Atlanta radio station WABE. “We need some sort of relief that will help address some of the financial challenges that the health care provider community is facing. These issues are real. They’re not going to go away and we trust leadership that they’re going to work with us on this.”
Is Governor Snyder's support of Obamacare through the Medicaid expansion a trend or an outlier? In the state of Ohio, Gov. John Kasich is polling strongly in his bid for reelection. Kasich is leading by 22 points, leading 57 percent to 35 percent, according to the latest Quinnipiac University poll. Kasich signed onto the Medicaid expansion early on in the process and said at the time, "This is the right thing for our state, and most important for our people who live in the shadows.” Kasich fought back pressure from fellow Republicans at the time and now it appears he has been vindicated.
It seems that Gov. Rick Snyder is betting his political future on it. The polls show in Michigan that Snyder is on the right side of the issue.
More about Governor Rick Snyder, Medicaid, Medicaid expansion
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