One day after spearheading an effort to reduce burdensome Medicaid requirements in Obamacare, the Republican leader of the Illinois state house is on the verge of voting to speed up the implementation of Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion in the state nearly two years early. This flip-flop will not only put Illinois’s budget outlook further in peril, but it strikes a blow to the Republican party’s anti-Obamacare messaging nationally.
Yesterday, Representative Aaron Schock and Illinois House Minority Leader Tom Cross spearheaded a letter to Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell urging support of legislation that would repeal the Medicaid Maintenance of Effort requirement (MOE) in Obamacare. Repealing the Medicaid MOE allows state governments the flexibility to reform Medicaid and bring about a more cost-efficient health-care system for low-income residents.
It’s another piece of tax-and-spend legislation to add to Quinn’s failed legacy. But at least in the past, Illinois’s Republican leadership avoided the political disaster of putting their fingerprints on legislation such as Quinn’s $7 billion income-tax increase. This time, Tom Cross seems content to cut a deal that will further imperil Illinois’s economic outlook while simultaneously eroding the national party’s messaging on the toxicity of Obamacare.
#more#To be fair, some Republicans in the state have spoken out about this nonsense. Representative Patti Bellock and Senator Dale Righter have stood up to such efforts to expand Medicaid in the past. Their constituents are counting on them to help bring others in the caucus to the right side of this issue.
Americans for Tax Reform has set up a portal to contact Illinois legislators and urge them to oppose these massive tax increases and the expansion of Obamacare in the state. You can access it here.
— Joshua Culling is state- affairs manager for Americans for Tax Reform.