April 1, 2021/Media, Press

Crack In The Door Widens On Medicaid Expansion As Republicans Express Support For Closing The Coverage Gap

Since the American Rescue Plan offered an additional incentive for states to expand Medicaid, even deep-red states like Alabama and Wyoming have considered taking the deal. Now, after years of Republican opposition, despite a majority of North Carolinians supporting Medicaid expansion, the door is ajar to extend health insurance to those that fall in the coverage gap.

Republicans are signaling support: 

  • Republican State Senator Kevin Corbin has announced he’d file a bill intended to close the health insurance coverage gap in North Carolina.

  • Dale Wiggins, a Republican commissioner from Graham County, said: “The Medicaid expansion issue to me is not one of statistics. What I try to do is put this on a human level, because that’s what it comes down to – it’s about human beings.”

  • A recent Meredith poll found that two thirds of North Carolinians support Medicaid expansion, including 46 percent of Republicans: “Medicaid expansion, even though Republican leadership in the General Assembly has been steadfastly opposed to this provision, remains very popular, even among Republicans in the state.”

Governor Cooper’s budget proposal includes Medicaid expansion, which would provide access to health care for more than 600,000 working North Carolinians, keeping rural hospitals open and strong, reducing the number of uninsured veterans, helping fight the opioid epidemic, and injecting over $5 billion in direct investment into the state by expanding Medicaid. Not to mention — the federal government has agreed to sweeten the deal. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “North Carolina would be in line for $2.4 billion” if the state passed Medicaid expansion.

Read more about the pressure mounting for North Carolina: