While Florida governor Rick Scott has endorsed Medicaid expansion, Virginia governor Bob McDonnell has taken a different stance.
“Please understand that I cannot and will not support consideration of an expansion of Medicaid in Virginia until major reforms are authorized and completed, and until we receive guarantees that the federal government’s promises to the states can be kept without increasing the immoral national debt,” McDonnell wrote in a letter to the General Assembly’s budget chairmen.
Leading legislators, including Virginia house speaker Bill Howell, also have indicated they cannot support Medicaid expansion and are insisting on major reforms to the program, including giving states more control over spending and benefits. The final vote by the General Assembly is expected before adjournment this weekend, but Democrats are threatening to hold up transportation funding if Republicans don’t agree to expand Medicaid. Governors and legislators are waging similar battles in other states.
Here are twelve reasons Governor McDonnell is correct in his decision and Governor Scott is wrong.
1. Virginia’s Medicaid spending will explode.
According to a forthcoming publication from the Heritage Foundation, Medicaid spending will increase dramatically as the federal match rate for the expansion population begins to drop and as more and more Virginians enroll in the program – as the data from Heritage in this chart indicates.