What's Next for Obamacare Foes Now That Fla. Gov. Rick Scott Has Caved

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott (AP/J Pat Carter)

On Wednesday, Florida Gov. Rick Scott, one of the most outspoken critics of President Obama's Affordable Care Act -- and the Medicaid expansion it carries with it -- announced that Florida will accept the federal windfall that the program will bring. This is a major about-face for Scott: When the Supreme Court ruled the Act constitutional, but said states could opt out of the Medicaid expansion, he was one of the first governors to announce that his state would not participate.

As we noted last July, the states that whose leaders have fought most aggressively against Obamacare tend to be the ones with the most to gain from the Medicaid expansion. The health care law extends Medicaid coverage to people making up to 133 percent of the poverty line -- for an individual, that's $14,857 per year. By comparison, many red states cap Medicaid coverage at a fraction of that. Texas, for example, restricts Medicaid coverage to people making less than 26 percent of the poverty line: $2,905 per year.

I
f states accept the Medicaid expansion, they won't have to pay any additional money until 2017, after which the federal government would continue to pay 90 percent of the added Medicaid costs. For states with especially stingy Medicaid restrictions, the potential budget benefits are enormous. Texas, for example, has calculated that by refusing the Medicaid expansion, it stands to lose $100 billion in federal funds over the next 10 years. Even so, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is standing firm in his rejection.

However, Perry is in an ever-dwindling group. Seven Republican governors have now signed on for the Medicaid expansion, and nearly a third of the states that have agreed to it so far are right-leaning. Gov. Scott is not the first Republican to get on board, but he may be one of the most influential: He's the first of the big Obamacare critics to break ranks.

Some states may continue to hold out against the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion, but given the enormous quantities of federal money on the table, chances are, eventually most governors will follow Scott's lead. As for those who don't, in a few years, they may find their successors aren't quite so ideologically rigid.

Bruce Watson is a senior features writer for DailyFinance. You can reach him by e-mail at bruce.watson@teamaol.com, or follow him on Twitter at @bruce1971.

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ajain31

Hello Friends,

Governor Rick Perry millions of under-privileged poor Texans who do not have any Health Coverage will be covered under The Affordable Care ACT (ACA) expansion of MEDICAID!

My Physician wife's practice is partly dependent on MEDICAID and its viability. Please allow the expansion of MEDICAID to occur in Texas under The Affordable Care ACT.

FACT: If states choose to expand Medicaid, the federal government will cover 100 percent of the costs from 2014 to 2016. The feds' contribution will begin to decrease in 2017, but will never be less than 90 percent, under the ACA.

That's why I created a petition to Governor Rick Perry, Texas Governor, The Texas State House, The Texas State Senate, and Governor Rick Perry, which says:

"Please ACCEPT the FREE EXPANSION of MEDICAID under The Affordable Care ACT."

Will you sign this petition? Click here:
http://signon.org/sign/accept-free-expansion?source=c.em.cp&r_by=7268737

Thanks!

Ajay Jain
ajain31@gmail.com
Twitter Handle ajain31
Mobile: 214-207-9781

March 30 2013 at 1:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
dr scott kanner

Rick Scott has only 35 chromosomes...he has outsourced the other 11

February 22 2013 at 5:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michele

I say he was THREATENED big time. Why else would he suddenly just cave in? Doesn't make sense at all.

February 22 2013 at 3:22 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
diane.bronner

The Obama team got to him! May not of been pretty!

February 22 2013 at 1:40 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to diane.bronner's comment
philnetgo

Maybe Chris Christy was going to sit on him if he din't go along!

February 22 2013 at 2:13 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
setanta_1

so what's next ?
all the little dweebes,drones and outright morons will be waiting in lines,waiting for the most basic elective surgery as in hip/knee replacements etc waiting to get basic care and formerly routine things done as in ecg etc
and ALL THAT KNEW BETTER will be laughing their @rses off and in their faces asking the same question: how's that hope and change thing workin' for ya " ? !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
has obummer produced that stash ?

February 22 2013 at 1:35 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
en4j

whats next for the keystone pipeline?,
whats next for over 4.00 dollar gasoline?
whats next for solar companies that sucked up tax dollars?
plenty of stories about liberal failures but this site only writes about conservative turn arounds, heres some thing you can try, spell unbiased jounalism, the media doesn't know what it means yet alone know how to spell it
just pathetic

February 22 2013 at 1:16 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to en4j's comment
vanvorous

Keystone...will be built based on what the states want. The Native Americans, MT, ND, NB and KS have already weighed in mostly nay. Eminent Domain by the FED? Thought conservative thinkers were all for states rights and them deciding their own futures or is that only iffen it doesn't affect folks outside of the state in question.

$4 gas... east MT and ND are in the middle of an oil boom, the Rocky Mt west is using $3.05/ gal gas and $3.5/ gal diesel. The refineries in the states along the Rockies states are at capacity. Oil to the E and W coast is an shipping issue owned by the refineries and oil companies involved not a FED problem. Take the issue up with your local state gov. and the refineries in your own states.

February 22 2013 at 1:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
teapotparty11

NO MORE SCOTT!!! TEA PARTY WILL OUST SCOTT FOR CAVING!!! HE PROBABLY FIGURES IT WILL BE EASY TO DO SOME MORE MEDICAID/MEIDCARE FRAUD LIKE HE DID AT HCA/COLUMBIA!!!! HE RAN AWAY FROM THAT BEFORE THEY GOT FINED 840 MILLION FOR MEDICARE FRAUD!!!

TEA PARTY WILL GET BREWER TOO FOR CAVING!!!!

TEA PARTY FOREVER!!!
CHENEY/BACHMANN 2016!!!

February 22 2013 at 12:38 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to teapotparty11's comment
setanta_1

imagine a world without libs and rinOs

February 22 2013 at 1:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mittmormonbot

I

f states accept the Medicaid expansion, they won't have to pay any additional money until 2017, after which the federal government would continue to pay 90 percent of the added Medicaid costs. For states with especially stingy Medicaid restrictions, the potential budget benefits are enormous. Texas, for example, has calculated that by refusing the Medicaid expansion, it stands to lose $100 billion in federal funds over the next 10 years. Even so, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is standing firm in his rejection.

However, Perry is in an ever-dwindling group. Seven Republican governors have now signed on for the Medicaid expansion, and nearly a third of the states that have agreed to it so far are right-leaning. Gov. Scott is not the first Republican to get on board, but he may be one of the most influential: He's the first of the big Obamacare critics to break ranks.

Some states may continue to hold out against the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion, but given the enormous quantities of federal money on the table, chances are, eventually most governors will follow Scott's lead. As for those who don't, in a few years, they may find their successors aren't quite so ideologically rigid

February 22 2013 at 12:25 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
sandi

After 3 years? the feds quit paying the states and they will have to pick up the tab so will they then opt out? But any way you look at it the welfare system- read more votes- is bankrupting the economy.

February 22 2013 at 12:22 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to sandi's comment
setanta_1

after 3 years ? and where IS this funding coming from ?
all bs.

February 22 2013 at 1:37 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
Arnie

Skame on you Rick Scott. You should be ashamed, you are a disgrace.

February 22 2013 at 12:06 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply