Missouri Senate Republicans: No Medicaid Expansion This Session

Caduceus, a symbol of medicine and health care | Photo by Nicole Lunger
Nicole Lunger/Missouri Business Alert

As the General Assembly returned from its spring break, a group of Republican Senators said during a floor discussion that Medicaid expansion is a “nonstarter” in their chamber.

Outgoing Sen. John Lamping, R-St. Louis, and Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, a 2016 candidate for attorney general, were among the naysayers Monday. “This is done,” Lamping said. “It’s not happening. Go find something else to do.”

Sen. Brad Lager, R-Savannah, another outgoing member and a conservative stalwart, was equally direct: “There is no path for Medicaid Expansion to occur in Missouri this year.”

In the House, where a hearing was held on the issue, Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka, said reforming Medicaid without expanding it is the only likely possibility.

Gov. Jay Nixon, a Democrat, has called for expanding the program to some 400,000 Missourians using federal funds for the first three years. Then, the costs would shift to 10 percent to the state by 2021. Rep. Noel Torpey, R-Independence, who toured the state over the summer hearing from citizens on the issue, has been presenting a proposal that would expand the program to those making below 100 percent of the federal poverty level.

Read more from St. Louis Public Radio and PoliticMo

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