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Expanding Medicaid: Congress will keep its word!

March 19. 2013 6:49PM

Supporters of expanding Medicaid eligibility in New Hampshire say the state should do it for two reasons: 1) it would subsidize health insurance coverage for more people, and 2) Washington will pay for it. There is a word for people like this: tools.

Under Obamacare, states initially were forced to expand Medicaid eligibility to families earning as much as 133 percent of the federal poverty level. The Supreme Court struck down the mandate as unconstitutional, so the expansion is up to each state.

A majority of the House Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs Committee concluded that expansion "would be a vehicle for bringing hundreds of millions of federal dollars into the state." It said also that the "Medicaid expansion and its federal financing/matching rate are enshrined in federal law. Changing either of these federal government obligations would require an Act of Congress."

Goodness, an act of Congress! Why, Congress's word is as good as... as.... hey, wait a second.

If your best argument is that Congress will keep its word, then you don't have an argument. No one - literally, to use a Bidenism - believes that Washington will enshrine into permanency a subsidy it already cannot afford to fund. The argument mocks itself. Those making it have let themselves become tools of the administration's propaganda machine. They are undermining New Hampshire's future fiscal stability for the sake of advancing the Obama administration's political goals. They should be stopped. Passing House Bill 271, to prohibit the state's expansion of Medicaid, would do that, for now. It's too bad the House hasn't the will to do it.

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