GOP-led states that held out on Medicaid giving in

August 29, 2013

Some of the Republican-led states holding out against expanding their Medicaid programs are beginning to cave, effectively embracing a key pillar of President Obama’s health care law.

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, persuaded enough lawmakers in his party this week to accept his plan to extend Medicaid to more low-income residents.

Expanding the federal-state health program to those making up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level is one of two major provisions in the Affordable Care Act that will take effect in the coming months, alongside private-insurance “exchanges” where Americans without employer-based insurance can buy coverage with the help of government subsidies.

The Michigan House is expected to approve Mr. Snyder’s measure — it requires beneficiaries to cover co-payments, among other conditions — placing him among Republican leaders who overcame near-blanket opposition to the health care law within the party.

In conservative Wyoming, lawmakers this week began to consider a “private option” that would allow the extra Medicaid beneficiaries to buy insurance on the state’s health exchange, using the federal money to subsidize the plans.

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