Latest Obamacare repeal bill would hit Arkansas treasury hard | Arkansas Blog

Latest Obamacare repeal bill would hit Arkansas treasury hard



The latest effort to undo Obamacare, the Graham-Cassidy legislation, would shift federal support for health coverage to a block grant system to the states. Bad news for Arkansas.

Block grants would be doled out equally — no advantage to states that adopted the Medicaid expansion.  States like Texas, which rejected the Medicaid expansion would benefit hugely. Arkansas? Loser. A Center for Budget and Policy Priorities analysis puts the loss to Arkansas at more than $1 billion a year by 2026. The bill eliminates federal subsidies for the Medicaid expansion in 2020. Conventional Medicaid also faces cuts.

Democrats in Congress are seeking a full Congressional Budget Office analysis of the legislation before a hurryup vote. The legislation reported is near the votes needed for passage. Much more is to be heard about the gutting or pre-existing condition protection in Obamacare. Insurance companies would have to offer it, but they could charge more, essentially killing it for many if not most beneficiaries.

UPDATE: A spokesman for Gov. Asa Hutchinson said he'd comment on the legislation tomorrow, shortly before leaving on a trip to Mexico to visit ASU's new campus there.

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