Ohio Governor John Kasich says he is not giving up his push for expansion of Medicaid as part of the proposed two year state budget. Some groups have suggested putting the issue on the ballot so that Ohioans can decide whether to expand Medicaid. Governor Kasich says he’s not opposed to that idea.
Groups that want Medicaid expansion are looking at their options right now. John Begala with the Center for Community Solutions wants Medicaid expansion as part of the state budget. But he says he’s willing to give lawmakers time to come up with Medicaid reforms that would allow low income Ohioans to purchase private health insurance with federal dollars. Still, Begala says he says his group is not willing to wait forever. He says if they don’t do it by the end of this year, his group is looking at another alternative: letting Ohio voters decide whether to expand Medicaid.
It looks like Medicaid expansion won’t likely be part of the proposed two year state budget that will come out of the Ohio Senate.
Governor John Kasich, Business leaders and even Democrats want Medicaid expansion in the Ohio Budget. But Republican Ohio Senate President Keith Faber says that’s unlikely.
"You need two chambers to move a bill and the house has indicated they simply don’t have the votes to get Medicaid expansion done in the budget," says Faber. "Therefore I do not believe Medicaid expansion is on the table as it relates to this legislation in the budget."