Mississippi’s Republican governor quietly considering Medicaid expansion

December 22, 2018, Politico, Paul Demko- Mississippi’s Republican governor is considering Medicaid expansion, the first sign that long-held GOP opposition could be wilting in the Deep South after an election that was a big winner for the Obamacare program. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant, entering his final year in office, has been engaged in quiet talks about adopting expansion after resisting for years, according to two sources familiar with the discussions. The behind-the-scenes move comes as a surprisingly viable Democratic gubernatorial candidate is planning to make Medicaid expansion a central issue in the 2019 election. But in an even more unlikely scenario, Republicans could beat him to it and undercut a key Democratic message. Until now, Medicaid expansion has largely been ignored in the Republican-dominated state, one of the sickest and the poorest in the country. Even Mississippi Democrats have largely dismissed it as politically unviable since a 2012 Supreme Court decision made the program optional for states.

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