Tennessee Democratic Candidate Calls for Medicaid Expansion

Here’s a fascinating look at how the politics of health care have shifted dramatically since the 2010 election when Republicans rode it to electoral victory.

Karl Dean, the former mayor of Nashville who is now the Democratic nominee in the Tennessee governor’s race, sent out an email urging supporters to support Medicaid expansion in the state, noting “We lost millions of dollars — federal funding paid for by our own taxes — that went to other states instead. We missed out on years of health care coverage for almost half a million uninsured Tennesseans and had several of our hospitals close.”

There are no new polls for the Tennessee governor’s race in the wake of last week’s primary. Larry Sabato and the Cook Political Report both rank the race as likely Republican.

Nebraska Group Claims It Has Enough Signatures for Medicaid Expansion

Nebraska voters will decide whether or not to expand Medicaid in the state, after the organization behind the effort claimed it had enough signatures to put the question on the November ballot.

Insure the Good Life announced it had collected more than 135,000 signatures in its efforts, far more than the 84,268 required by today’s deadline.  In order to qualify, the group had to collect signatures from a minimum of 7 percent of the state’s more than 1.2 million registered voters. Those signatures were turned over to the office of  Secretary of State John Gale this afternoon, but verification could take as long as 50 days, according to an announcement sent out from Gale’s office.

If the initiative qualifies for the ballot and voters approve it, the state’s Medicaid plan would be expand eligibility to cover “certain adults” between the ages of 19 and 64 whose incomes are 138 percent below the federal poverty level. According to the Associated Press, Medicaid expansion would provide health care to an estimated 90,000 Nebraskans who earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to qualify for financial assistance under the Affordable Care Act.

Maine voters approved Medicaid expansion during the 2017 election, becoming the first state to do so. A similar initiative is pending for the November election ballot in Idaho and another has already been certified and will appear on the ballot in Utah.