Sunday letters: Keep pressure on Gov Haley on Medicaid

February 16, 2014 

State of The State

SC Gov Nikki Haley

MARY ANN CHASTAIN — AP

— More than 194,000 S.C. residents are being denied health care coverage because Gov. Nikki Haley is refusing to expand Medicaid.

In her State of the State address, she said, “We will continue to fight Obamacare every step of the way.”

It’s hard to fathom why she is doing this — except out of spite — since expanding Medicaid would be a huge bargain for South Carolina (100 percent of the cost would be borne by the federal government through 2016, and 90 percent thereafter), and 194,330 residents would benefit, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Here’s the thing: Refusing Medicaid funding could prove to be a big political liability for Gov. Haley. Medicaid expansion is a very popular idea nationwide — and not just in blue states. Last year, eight Republican governors succumbed to political pressure and accepted the funds.

We can flip Gov. Haley too, if we keep the pressure building.

Carl Zwerling

Irmo

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