State infographics illustrate how the damage from a decision against the government in King v. Burwell would be spread throughout the country, from Alaska to Florida. Thousands of people would suddenly face higher premiums in every congressional district in the 34 affected states.
Republicans swept the governor’s races last November, dashing hopes that those who opposed Medicaid expansion would be replaced in 2015. Instead, Republican governors put their alternative proposals on statehouse agendas in the South and the West, pitting them against GOP lawmakers. Some legislative sessions will be wrapping up this month and those Medicaid expansion proposals are generating some political battles, as you’ll see below.
As Tennessee begins its new legislative session, Gov. Bill Haslam is urging legislators to support his plan to expand Medicaid in the Volunteer State. Business leaders in the state are endorsing the plan—Insure Tennessee—for its economic impact and its benefit to low-income workers.
Haslam has called for a special session of the legislature to meet February 2 to approve his Insure Tennessee plan, which would amend the state’s current Medicaid waiver.
In most states, the health care sector is among the industry sectors with the largest employment. Health care jobs tend to pay more than a state’s median wages, and growth in this sector can have a positive economic effect on other areas of a state’s economy. Many organizations, ours included, have written about the effects of Medicaid expansion on a state’s economy. Recently, Missouri (a state that has not yet expanded Medicaid) compared its employment growth in the health care sector to that of select Medicaid expansion states.