Yet another statewide business group supports Medicaid expansion

Seal_of_MissouriAs an increasing number of governors, including Republicans and the Republican governor of the reddest state in the country, have decided to expand Medicaid, it’s clear that business groups played a role in making those calls.

Businesses want Medicaid expansion because it’s good for the economy and for their bottom lines.

In Maine, the LePage-hired consultant group didn’t do an economic impact assessment, one of several fatal flaws in the report besides a huge miscalculation it can’t explain.

So when the appropriate analysis was done for Maine, by the Maine Center for Economic Policy, it became apparent that if Maine expanded, it would reap significant job growth and an expanding economy.

Thus it’s not surprising that a group of moderate Republicans, majority Democrats, the Maine Hospital Association, the Maine Medical Association, and the state Chamber has been meeting to try to work out an expansion compromise that would garner enough votes to overcome a veto from Gov. LePage. 

As Maine’s state Chamber of Commerce is helping with negotiations, another state’s business group is pushing for an expansion

The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry has hired former U.S. Senator Kit Bond, Republican of Missouri, to try to get Medicaid expansion passed.

[Gov.] Nixon’s administration has said Missouri could get $1.7 billion of federal aid next year if it expands Medicaid.

[Chamber President Dan] Mehan said the Chamber of Commerce doesn’t support the federal health care law, but nonetheless believes Missouri should expand its Medicaid program because the influx of federal money would help the economy. If Missouri’s doesn’t expand Medicaid, Mehan said the health care costs of the uninsured will be shifted to those covered through employer-sponsored health insurance plans.

“It’s the opportunity to reform the Medicaid system and make it more cost-efficient,” Mehan said. “And with regards to attracting that $2 billion into the state of Missouri, we make the business case for that. [Bond] can articulate that we’ve done this in the past with partnerships between the federal government and states.” [source]

Good for business. Good for jobs.

That’s what the main state-wide business group in the Show Me states sees will come from Medicaid expansion, and that’s why they want to get it done.

Amy Fried

About Amy Fried

Amy Fried loves Maine's sense of community and the wonderful mix of culture and outdoor recreation. She loves politics in three ways: as an analytical political scientist, a devoted political junkie and a citizen who believes politics matters for people's lives. Fried is Professor of Political Science at the University of Maine. Her views do not reflect those of her employer or any group to which she belongs.