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House Democratic Leader's Statement on GOP's Refusal to Include Medicaid Expansion in Budget

Partisan budget rewards rich while denying Ohioans healthcare
April 19, 2013
Democratic Newsroom

COLUMBUS – Ohio House Minority Leader Budish released the following statement after the Ohio House refused to include Medicaid expansion as part of the state’s two-year budget.  Medicaid expansion would have provided healthcare coverage to more than 275,000 Ohioans and created thousands of jobs in the healthcare field.

 “This budget tragically fails to expand healthcare coverage to Ohioans who are working but cannot afford healthcare coverage.

 “The people who would benefit from expanding Medicaid are sales clerks at the department store and lab assistants at hospitals.  They are not ‘takers,’ and they are not people who are dependent on government.  They are people working to make a better life for themselves and their families.  Without healthcare coverage, working poor Ohioans may not get healthcare and their condition could become so bad they can no longer work.  Medicaid expansion to people who are working doesn’t create dependency, it prevents it.

 “House Republicans have given in to the extreme right- wing of their party, costing more than 275,000 Ohioans healthcare coverage, despite widespread bipartisan support for expanding Medicaid from the healthcare industry and groups across the political spectrum. 

 “If Gov. Kasich allows this decision to stand, Ohio will lose $13 billion in federal aide, Ohioans in need will suffer, and our thriving healthcare industry will be undercut.  Hospitals could see job cuts, and according to Moody’s Investor Services, doing nothing to meet the demand for healthcare will jeopardize hospitals’ bond ratings and increase their risk of budget deficits. 

 “It is simply unacceptable to kick the can down the road.  House Democrats will continue to push for Medicaid expansion and work to gain support for stand-alone legislation that was recently introduced.”