Kasich Wants to Keep Medicaid Expansion

Governor Kasich spoke about healthcare after a press conference about data analytics at the Cleveland Clinic. [Phoebe Petrovic / ideastream]
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Ohio Governor John Kasich will attend the Presidential Inauguration in Washington, and he plans to talk about healthcare while he’s in town.

He says he's concerned about Congressional Republicans’ plan to repeal and replace Obamacare. Any changes might jeopardize the Medicaid expansion Kasich championed – against the objections of his party – in 2013.

"I've heard a lot about repeal. I haven't heard much about replace," the Governor said. "But when it comes to Medicaid expansion, I’m going to testify or going to some meeting, something down in Washington the day before the inauguration to talk about this because we have 700,000 people who are now getting healthcare who didn’t, 85% of whom didn’t have healthcare until we expanded Medicaid."

Kasich wants to keep those people insured. He said the alternative—receiving primary care in an emergency room—is too costly. He hinted at what he might say to lawmakers.

"Do I think that Obamacare can be dramatically improved? I do. Do I want to see a repeal of the expansion of Medicaid? I don’t. And if they’re going to do it, tell me what you’re going to do," he explained.

Kasich says he wants to see the new administration and the Republican Congress succeed but not at the expense of Ohio’s Medicaid recipients.

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