Just as the Republican majority in the Mississippi Legislature is determined not to accept federal money to expand Medicaid, the Democrats in the Biden administration are determined to coax states into taking the deal.
The Washington Post website reported Tuesday that the administration is focusing its attention on Texas, which like Mississippi is among the 12 states that did not accept the Affordable Care Act’s Medicare expansion.
The Obama administration was able to convince three quarters of the states to get on board by promising to pay 90% of the cost of expansion. Now the government is offering a temporarily sweeter deal as it tries to reduce the rising rate of Americans who do not have health insurance.
A bill in Congress says that states that expand Medicaid will get a 5% increase in federal money for the program for existing patients — everyone outside the group added in the expansion. This increased match would last for two years.
Supersized Texas is clearly the main target of this incentive. It has more residents without health coverage than any other state, and this rate is rising because of the coronavirus pandemic.