Yet when Democratic Gov. Tony Evers tried to do the same thing, promising to expand Medicaid, he's accused of trying to "score political points?" And that's what snarky Republican Rep. Robin Vos said about Evers proposal.
Medicaid Expansion No Brainer: WPT's Here and Now presented a few important points, including the not so surprising admission by public servant Vos that he's out to protect insurance profits, and not provide health care to constituents.
First, here's what Gov. Evers sees as a win-win for Wisconsinites and the economy with Medicaid Expansion. The math is inescapable, and another revealing horror from Scott Walker's "legacy:"
Yes, Vos and Sen. Scott Fitzgerald walked away from $1 billion because government would just spend, spend, spend...on roads, schools, broadband expansion, pay of debt, etc.??!!!
In fact, Evers is so sure about Medicaid Expansion, that he's taking it directly to Republican rural voters who have been ignored by Walker and the legislature for years, under the guise of "small government." The days of rural resentment might be over.
Tony Evers: If Republican legislators who come from small town Wisconsin that understand that the success of those small town hospitals and clinics depend upon having access to greater resources, they may change their mind. So we’re going to take this directly to the people of Wisconsin in a respectful way.
Uh-oh, Wrong Argument Robin...: For Vos, it's not about helping and strengthening rural communities and farmers, nope, it's about protecting those city slicker insurers.
Vos claims insurers will be forced to pay into Medicaid Expansion, and then increase insurance rates on those buying policies in the private sector, something I can't confirm after extensive research (but I did find job creation and higher state revenues-shown later below).
Still, and ironically, those terrible "higher insurance premiums" Vos is complaining about, well they're a major funding source for the Republicans much touted "high risk pools." Seriously? Good luck selling that plan now:
Robin Vos: Every person that’s on BadgerCare is subsidized by somebody who’s in the private insurance market. So the more people that we take from the private insurance market to put into the public market, the higher the rates are going to go for those people who have private sector insurance. So granted, there might be a short one-time savings for the state, but that is more than offset by the cost in the private sector for what they have to pay to subsidize those people who are already on BadgerCare.Wisconsin's Far Right Legislature nothing like other Red States: Vos is also wildly wrong about "a short one-time savings for the state." In fact, expansion pays for itself and so much more, and research proves it:
Forbes: Republican-leaning states like Montana have used the economic argument to help win over skeptics ... which expanded Medicaid in 2016 to more than 90,000 people. A study out this month from the University of Montana’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research shows the expansion of Medicaid generates a half-billion dollars a year in healthcare spending. Of that, 70%, or $350 million to $400 million, is “new money circulating in Montana’s economy.”
The gerrymandered Republican majority at the Capitol will now have to argue against real jobs and economic numbers. Other red states are also moving forward:
The Montana report comes as Missouri, Nebraska, Idaho and Utah are working to put Medicaid expansion on this November’s general election ballot and as legislatures in other states like Virginia and Utah are moving Medicaid expansion bills forward.
It’s new money into the economy,” University of Montana’s Bryce Ward, the study’s author, said of Medicaid expansion in an interview. “In 2020, the state has to pay its full 10% share, but you get the 90% from taxpayers in other states.”
“Medicaid expansion has a positive fiscal impact on the state budget. Medicaid expansion reduces state spending in some areas (e.g., traditional Medicaid). It also increases economic activity and, as such, increases state revenue,” Ward and fellow researcher Brandon Bridge wrote in their University of Montana study. “Combined, the savings and increased revenues are sufficient to more than cover the Montana’s share of Medicaid expansion costs (10% in 2020 and beyond).”
Last year, the University of Michigan said “ripple effects” from Medicaid expansion created more than 30,000 new jobs, including 85% in the private sector.
“We are employing more people,” Ward, of the University of Montana, said of Medicaid expansion. “You can see it.”