More waiting games

Ohio is still debating Medicaid expansion. Kasich backs the expansion under his new “compassionate conservative” persona, but the Ohio Tea Party really only has one issue, and it’s opposition to Obamacare. It didn’t help that Ohio Republican leaders helped them pass a useless law banning Obamacare in 2011 which didn’t “ban” anything, because that just made them madder:

Here’s a new poll that says the expansion is popular among non-Republicans:

A clear majority of Ohioans, 63 percent, support the idea of expanding Medicaid eligibility to cover more low-income adults, but the state’s Republicans don’t share that view, according to a new Ohio Health Issues Poll.
The release coincides with hearings starting this week in the House Finance committee on two Medicaid reform bills –one that would raise the eligibility limit to 138 percent of the federal poverty level and one that would require several changes in the operation of the program but does not include the expansion.
The lawmakers who sponsored the bills are set to give testimony Tuesday, while testimony from proponents and opponents is likely next week.
The state has estimated that 275,000 more adults would be added to Medicaid under the expansion. So far, 24 states have opted to go forward with the expansion, the Kaiser Family Foundation reports.
In the pollsters’ breakdown of results, the only demographic group that did not have a majority answering “yes” was Republican Party members, with only 33 percent in favor. The question got 52 percent support among independents and 82 percent among Democrats. Support was 61 percent among registered voters. Support for the expansion was lowest among white males, those who have employer-paid coverage, college graduates and those who say they know a lot about the issue.

This does not actually surprise me, because, despite what one might hear about how much we all hate the program, half of Americans report a personal tie to Medicaid and they like Medicaid:

Kaiser’s latest health tracking poll focuses on Medicaid — and some of its findings may surprise you. About half (51%) of the 1,203 adults surveyed report a personal connection with the federal-state insurance program for low-income Americans, defined as receiving benefits themselves or having a friend or family member who has done so.
Digging into who actually receives Medicaid explains how so many Americans have had a brush with the program. According to previous Kaiser research, a full 70% of nursing-home residents have Medicaid coverage. (As the NYT noted in a recent storyon the impact of proposed Medicaid changes on the elderly, seniors who start out with savings often spend all their money on long-term care.)
And according to Kaiser, 60% of low-income kids, 44% of HIV/AIDS patients, 41% of pregnant women, 20% of people with severe disabilities and 21% of Medicare beneficiaries receive Medicaid coverage. About 20% of adults in the current Kaiser poll report having ever received Medicaid benefits, and of those, 86% report an overall positive experience with the program — very similar to satisfaction rates with private insurance.

30 replies
  1. 1
    Baud says:

    Jesus, if Arizona and Michigan can do it…

  2. 2
    Yatsuno says:

    The number one dissatisfaction with Medicaid is finding a provider who will accept it. I thought maybe that would get better with ACA since there was supposed to be a bump in provider payout rates.

  3. 3
    Spaghetti Lee says:


    The Republicans do seem to be shifting from “What a terrible idea!” to “What a great idea, glad I thought of it!” like they did with Stimulus cash. I’d offer bets on 2014/16 GOP candidates talking about how they supported giving people Medicaid when Obamacare tried to deny them, but I don’t think many people would bet against that.

  4. 4
    Linnaeus says:


    Jesus, if Arizona and Michigan can do it…

    If Michigan didn’t approve Medicaid expansion (and I believe they’re still waiting for the state senate to vote on it), that would actually be more of an aberration with respect to the state’s political history than if it did. The wingnut legislature is a fairly recent phenomenon.

  5. 5
    Gravenstone says:

    Once again, the old home state making me proud …

  6. 6
    qwerty42 says:

    So, when the Republicans vote against this stuff are they so seized with the ecstasy their eyes roll back in their sockets and all?

  7. 7
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    Those of us in advocacy continue to press the Ohio legislators on the topic. The real problem, of course is the spiteful base for whom anything connected to the Islamofascist Kenyan Usurper is toxic. No matter how many times we say “Affordable Care Act” and federal funding coming to Ohio that will be spent anyway but go to CA if Ohio turns it down, there’s a group that screams “Obamacare” and “deficit” and “give us our freeedumz back.”

    It’s kind of tiring but we haven’t given up. People who’ve been at this a lot longer than I have say they do not recall the same level of highly emotional and intensely nasty partisanship before.

  8. 8
    Hal says:


    So, when the Republicans vote against this stuff are they so seized with the ecstasy their eyes roll back in their sockets and all?

    Think When Harry Met Sally deli scene. “I’ll have what she’s not having. Which of course is expanded medical coverage.”

    I’m wondering if we are going to be seeing in the next years a new dynamic to poverty in America. One in which poor people in some states with healthcare may still be poor, but in better health and more financial (if limited) resources than poor people in other states without expanded medicaid.

  9. 9
    Spaghetti Lee says:


    Michigan is the South now? The midwest in general tends to be closer to the top than the bottom in rankings of health, poverty, and education. More liberal, too. The bottom ten on any list like that is the same old suspects-AL, MS, LA, OK, SC, and so forth. A hard club to get into for sure.

    I don’t think the midwest is more conservative than it used to be, 2010 nonwithstanding. States like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Illinois used to be solid GOP in presidential elections, now they’re solid Dem.

  10. 10

    My RW trolls are telling me that thanks to Obummercare, health insurance premiums are up a whopping 30%!

    But this week, even the Wall Street Journal had to grudgingly report that the Affordable Care Act has lowered the cost of actual healthcare:

    The effects of the federal health care overhaul — the Affordable Care Act that passed in 2010 —and constrained government payments to doctors and hospitals seems to be trickling down to consumers, both those directly purchasing insurance plans and those buying drugs and treatments.

    “The slowing of healthcare inflation right now seems to be driven by onset of new policies,” said Alec Phillips, a Goldman Sachs GS -1.58% economist who follows health care trends. “That is probably going to be a temporary factor.”

    You can almost feel how much it hurt them to report that.

  11. 11
    rikyrah says:

    the evil in this just pisses me off.

    they are literally telling folks…yeah, we don’t care if you die.

  12. 12
    jayjaybear says:

    Support for the expansion was lowest among white males, those who have employer-paid coverage, college graduates and those who say they know a lot about the issue.

    Dunning-Kruger in play?

  13. 13
    stoned stats says:

    God bless you, Kay. You live in a fucked up State (sic).

  14. 14
    Anne Laurie says:

    @jayjaybear: Nah, what they know is “I Got Mine, Fck Y’all.” The GOP motto, down to its DNA.

  15. 15
    Kay says:


    Medicaid is weird. A lot of my clents children are on it, their parents work full time but kids qualify.
    The program is called Buckeye and I find they don’t connect that to “Medicaid”.
    I try to get it across to them because I think it’s important that they realize IT’S MEDICAID. That way they’ll support the program politically.
    I just rephrase. They say “Buckeye” I follow with “oh, so Medicaid”.

  16. 16
    Roger Moore says:

    They say they know a lot about the issue because they’ve been listening to Rush and Hannity talk about it for years. How else do you become an expert?

  17. 17
    Lurking Canadian says:

    @rikyrah: Beyond that. I think the message is “We INSIST that you die.”

    This is not just refusal to help the needy. This is refusal to allow ANYBODY to help the needy.

    And this behavior, they call CHRISTIAN.

  18. 18
    Punchy says:

    Must suck to run a hospy in Cincy and watch these clowns basically throw away free money that should go as indigent care reimbursy but will instead pay for Homeless Rob’s pertussis in Penny…

  19. 19
    Emerald says:

    @Punchy: And that’s what’s gonna get these idiots in line, eventually. Their hospitals are going to go freakin’ bankrupt, and those are major Republican donors.

    That’s why Voldemort Rick Scott in Florida wanted the Medicaid expansion, and it’s why Jan Brewer did it too.

    They’ll all come around eventually, but plenty of poor folks in those states will suffer before they do. I give ’em all about two to three years before the hospitals force them all to quietly comply.

  20. 20
    cckids says:

    My son, who is seriously disabled (from birth), has been on Medicaid since he was diagnosed at 4 months old, when my insurance company booted him off the policy due to his disability. And while it certainly has its drawbacks, like finding providers, it has saved his life. Over & over again. From talking to people with insurance, dealing with the ins. companies is at least the PITA that Medicaid is.

    People who crap on Medicaid can suck it. They have no concept of what life would be for some without it.

    And the rest of us don’t have insurance; we make too much for Medicaid, at least until Obamacare kicks in. I’d LOVE to have coverage like Medicaid for my other kids.

  21. 21
    e.a.f. says:

    I really wonder about people who would deny others health care. Like what is with those people. Don’t they understand, if people don’t have adequate health care they get sick and stay sick longer, which is a much greater drain on the economy than just having a decent medical system to begin with.

    When people go without adequate health care, and then get on Medicare, at 65, of course it is going to cost a lot. These people haven’t seen a doctor in decades. If they had been seeing a doctor since birth, they might be in much better shape.

    How a country which calls itself civilized and how so many who call themselves christian, would deny other people medical care, just because they aren’t rich, is beyond me.

    Those legislaters in Ohio, need to be sent to the streets, without health care and money for awhile and see how well they do.

  22. 22
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q): People who’ve been at this a lot longer than I have say they do not recall the same level of highly emotional and intensely nasty partisanship before

    Hm. Shocker.

  23. 23
    Another Halocene Human says:

    I wonder if that is why there is less angst in Florida. In Florida the TPers are straight up about IGMFY. Florida has always been multiethnic, multiracial, with a long, ugly racist history and a way of catering to the hyperrich on the beaches and fuck everyone else. However, this big crew wheeled in from New York and a bunch more flew over from Puerto Rico and even though the state went GOP they haven’t. Florida also still has moderate Republicans. As sucky as the lege is overall.

    I wonder if Scott can get this Medicaid thing through. He managed to sell Obama on his “give Scott a piece of Medicaid managed care plan” (jeezus), but he has such a bad relationship with the lege in general that I just doubt it.

    Scott vetoed a bill that passed with almost all of the legislature and popular support that would have gotten rid of automatic alimony. His veto statement indicated that he didn’t have a clue about the issue. You think people are going to forget that? It’s not a partisan issue.

  24. 24
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @efgoldman: Being poor in MI beats being poor in FL. I know this because I just went through helping a young woman resettle from one to the other.

    The cruelty towards homeless people really gets me, too. It goes against everything I was raised with. I don’t understand these people except maybe they haven’t clue in that THEY have LAND and HOMELESS people DON’T maybe that’s why they’re HOMELESS and being a “bum” has nothing to do with it? Ugh.

  25. 25
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Southern Beale: “That is probably going to be a temporary factor.”

    Okay, Mr Smarty Pants analyst, if that is true then what happens to the savings from investing in preventative care? Is it a few years out so by then you will have moved the goal posts?

    “Deaths from cancer are down, but pension costs are higher, say analysts.”

  26. 26
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @e.a.f.: How a country which calls itself civilized and how so many who call themselves christian, would deny other people medical care, just because they aren’t rich, is beyond me.

    Honey, Christian is just a label to these clowns.

  27. 27
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @cckids: Man, that sucks. Florida’s version is Florida KidCare. The coverage is broad and on a sliding scale so even working parents making decent money can get their kids on (and I know it costs less than my employer’s “family” plan). It must date to Florida’s brief progressive period before JEB! came in and for whatever reason ALEC hasn’t sicced them on it yet.

    I heard about Walker. ::shudder::

  28. 28
    debbie says:

    Ohio’s loss of Medicare is inevitable. Tie that happy news in with Kasich’s vision of $400.00 tax refund checks to small businesses so they can create all kinds of new jobs, and all kinds of good times are ahead.

  29. 29
    e.a.f. says:

    @Another Halocene Human: yes, that must be it. They certainly haven’t read their bible, thats for sure. There is this one passage I remember from sunday school days, as a kid, so you do unto the least of them you do unto me. As I recall its some quote from their “god” Jesus.

    Not being a “christian”, but one of those godless ones, I do remember some things from that bible and it talkes about all sorts of stuff. Guess some of the churchs missed those sections. You/’d think some of those huge wealthy churchs would have medical clinics. Guess that isn’t part of god’s work for them. If there is a god and a heaven, some of those “christians” sure are in for a shock when there get there.

  30. 30
    Citizen S says:

    Yeah, Americans For Prosperity would have Pennsylvania believe that “Medicaid is bad medicine”. I’m pretty sure they’re in the minority on that one.

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