Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who has repeatedly attacked Obamacare, is still refusing to expand Medicaid to more than one million uninsured people in his state, reports the Houston Chronicle.
Texas has the nation’s highest rate of uninsured residents, and the proposed Medicaid expansion, under Obamacare, would cover more than one million new people.
“Let me go on the record here for a moment: We’re not going to be expanding Medicaid in Texas,” Perry said during a speech in Washington D.C. on Friday. “The reason is because it’s a broken system. It’s moving our state, and I’ll just speak to our state, towards bankruptcy if we expand the current program.”
Last week, protesters outside the Texas State Capitol waved signs and gave speeches slamming Perry for refusing to accept the funding, a decision that the Supreme Court ruled last year was up to individual states to make.
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With a re-election campaign next year and a potential second presidential run in 2016, Perry could pay a political price from the extreme right wing if he were to flip-flop as many GOP governors already have on expanding Medicaid.
“From a public policy position, and for investing in the future of our state, there has never been a more obvious decision,” said Matt Glazer of Progress Texas. “That being said, Rick Perry is clearly running for president again, and he’s doing everything he can do to make that possible.”
“The governor always compares the expansion of Medicaid to putting another thousand people on the Titanic,” said Perry's spokesperson Josh Havens. “It’s just reckless and not fiscally responsible and [it’s] why the governor’s holding the line here in Texas.”
Source: Houston Chronicle