Because of the Supreme Court, each state in the U.S. has the option of refusing to enact the Medicaid expansion contained in Obamacare, a program that costs the states nothing for several years and then only 5% after that. How is that working out for the 24 Republican-controlled states that opted out?
The 24 states that have refused to expand Medicaid are losing out on some $423.6 billion between now and 2022, according to a new study [pdf] from the Urban Institute and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The Urban Institute researchers have made projections for just how much money each state is implicitly giving up by refusing to expand Medicaid. Georgia is a good example. According to the Urban report, Georgia would have to spend an additional $2.5 billion over the course of a decade in order to finance its share of the Medicaid expansion. But the state is giving up more than ten times that—$33.5 billion—in federal funds.Not only are these states hurting, and even killing, their own constituents, but they’re screwing themselves out of billions of dollars in direct economic benefits. More of their citizens will get sick and die and the economic impact from lost work and having to cover people in emergency rooms will take an additional toll. In any sane universe, the citizens would vote out their Republican overlords and demand the expansion. But instead, they’ll just reelect them.
But at least they stuck it to the President, right?