May 21, 2016

WHICH IS WHY GOVERNORS MAKE BETTER PRESIDENTS:

In Surprising Turnabout, Oklahoma Eyes Medicaid Expansion (SEAN MURPHY, MAY 16, 2016, AP)

Despite bitter resistance in Oklahoma for years to President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, Republican leaders in this conservative state are now confronting something that alarms them even more: a huge $1.3 billion hole in the budget that threatens to do widespread damage to the state's health care system.

So, in what would be the grandest about-face among rightward leaning states, Oklahoma is now moving toward a plan to expand its Medicaid program to bring in billions of federal dollars from Obama's new health care system.

What's more, GOP leaders are considering a tax hike to cover the state's share of the costs.

"We're to the point where the provider rates are going to be cut so much that providers won't be able to survive, particularly the nursing homes," said Republican state Rep. Doug Cox, referring to possible cuts in state funds for indigent care that could cause some hospitals and nursing homes to close.

Despite furious opposition by conservative groups, Republican Gov. Mary Fallin and some GOP legislative leaders are pushing the plan, and support appears to be growing in the overwhelmingly Republican Legislature.

Posted by at May 21, 2016 7:35 AM

  

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