KHN Morning Briefing

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Va. Governor Asks Republicans To Have ‘Open Mind’ On Medicaid Expansion

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's $109 billion budget includes expansion of the program, but GOP legislators have called it an unhelpful gimmick. Meanwhile in his State of the State address, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal maintains his opposition to Medicaid expansion.

The Richmond Times Dispatch: In Call For Unity, McAuliffe Urges Lawmakers To Avoid 'Political Sideshows'
The governor has submitted a two-year, $109 billion budget proposal that includes significant new spending to boost research and development and realign the state’s K-12 and higher-education systems to better prepare students for in-demand jobs, specifically computer science and coding. The budget, which will outlast [Gov. Terry] McAuliffe’s time in office, also includes the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, a key initiative for the governor that the GOP-controlled General Assembly has rejected as an ill-advised burden on state resources. (Moomaw, 1/13)

Georgia Health News: Deal Says Health Care Costs Need Tight Rein
Gov. Nathan Deal said Wednesday that health care spending continues to burden Georgia’s budget, and he signaled that his longtime opposition to expanding the state’s Medicaid program has not changed. His comments in the State of the State address contrasted with the actions of some fellow governors, who recently have proposed or pushed Medicaid expansion. (Miller, 1/13)

Elsewhere, President Barack Obama is touting Louisiana's decision to expand —

The Associated Press: Obama To Highlight Louisiana Decision To Expand Medicaid
Louisiana's new governor, Democrat John Bel Edwards, is getting a public "thank you" from President Barack Obama for rejecting the stance of his Republican predecessor and starting the process to expand the state's Medicaid program. Obama, for whom this is a key end-of-term policy priority, was appearing in Baton Rouge on Thursday as part of a post-State of the Union road trip. (Superville, 1/13)

New Orleans Times Picayune: Barack Obama, John Bel Edwards Talk Medicaid Expansion In Louisiana
Medicaid expansion was a key portion of [Gov. John Bel Edwards'] stump speech, and he never shied away from his plans to fully embrace it if elected. As Obama finishes out his last year as president, he's hoping to draw attention to some of his legacy policy initiatives. Louisiana didn't back Obama in either of his elections, but with Medicaid expansion, the president will have had a lasting impact on the way health care works in the state, even if he hasn't always been popular here. (O'Donoghue, 1/13)

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