March 14, 2019/Press

Republican Desperation to Avoid Medicaid Expansion Reaches a New Low

Raleigh – North Carolina Senate Republicans are increasingly desperate to hide their position on Medicaid expansion, recognizing that not only does expansion make fiscal sense and save lives but that they are on the wrong side of voters across the state.

Their latest gambit is to hide behind an arcane Senate rule to shift blame for killing Medicaid expansion. Rather than simply voting down an amendment to expand Medicaid, Republicans tabled it and invoked a parliamentary rule which they claim will prevent it from resurfacing.

The gambit is a new low for Senate Republicans, chiefly because they themselves are the lone body holding the health care of more than 500,000 people in limbo. From WRAL:

“But the bottom line for Democrats: Medicaid expansion isn’t coming to the floor without backing from Senate leadership, making all this talk about rules irrelevant.”

The stark reality is the Republican General Assembly is the only thing standing in the way of 500,000 North Carolinians gaining access to health care. Yesterday’s back-and-forth reaffirmed that reality – while also putting Senate Republicans on the record against Medicaid expansion and protections for preexisting conditions.

“Republicans have made it crystal clear for voters across the state what their health care agenda is – leave 500,000 North Carolinians without access to health care and erode protections for preexisting conditions,” NCDP spokesman Robert Howard said. “No arcane rule can hide that fact, and its time Republicans stop playing games, come to the table, and discuss what an overwhelming majority of North Carolinians want.”