May 30, 2018

Medicaid expansions move forward across the country

Protesters hold a demonstration in support of health care in Montana, 2017. Photo: William Campbell-Corbis via Getty Images

Virginia's state legislature appeared to make some progress yesterday toward adopting the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion, which would cover some 400,000 people in the state, per the AP.

Why it matters: There are only 14 states that haven't taken part in the ACA's Medicaid expansion. It gained new life in Virginia after Democrats made big gains in the state legislature, and ballot initiatives are one way — albeit not a sure-fire one — to advance the issue in deep-red states.

Meanwhile, Medicaid expansion will officially be on the ballot this fall in Utah. The state certified the ballot initiative yesterday, after advocates submitted the required number of signatures last month.

  • The referendum is competing with a partial expansion that has the support of Republicans in the state legislature, as well as Gov. Gary Herbert.
  • The full expansion would cover roughly 70,000 Utah residents, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

Advocates in Idaho also say they've collected enough signatures to get the expansion on the ballot. It would cover up to 62,000 people there.

The bottom line: If all three states ultimately sign on, more than 500,000 Americans could gain health coverage, and Medicaid could become even more politically difficult to cut.

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Trump's new purge

Michael Atkinson, arrives in October for closed-door questioning about the whistleblower complaint. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Sources close to President Trump expect him to fire more inspectors general across his government.

What they're saying: Conservative allies of the president have told him that these IGs are members of the “deep state” trying to undermine him. Trump appears to have embraced that view.

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Axios Visuals

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 11:30 a.m. ET: 1,140,327 — Total deaths: 60,887 — Total recoveries: 233,930Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 11:30 a.m. ET: 278,568 — Total deaths: 7,163 — Total recoveries: 9,920Map.
  3. Public health latest: The CDC is recommending Americans wear face coverings in public to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. The federal government will cover the costs of COVID-19 treatment for the uninsured.
  4. 2020 latest: "I think a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting," President Trump said of the 2020 election, as more states hold primaries by mail. Montana Gov. Steve Bullock said Friday that every county in the state has opted to expand mail-in voting for the state's June 2 primary.
  5. Business updates: America's small business bailout is off to a bad start. The DOT is urging airlines to refund passengers due to canceled or rescheduled flights, but won't take action against airlines that provide vouchers or credits.
  6. Oil latest: A pivotal Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Military updates: Senators call for independent investigation into the firing of Navy captain of the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt. The U.S. military is struggling to find new recruits as enlistment stations are shut down.
  8. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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U.S. coronavirus updates: New York reports record 630 deaths in 24 hours

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

New York reported 630 new deaths in 24 hours, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Saturday — an "all-time increase" that beat the previous day's record of 562 deaths in one day.

The big picture: As expected, COVID-19 death tolls are rising in the U.S., killing more than 7,100 people in total, and over 1,000 in 24 hours alone. The CDC is recommending Americans wear face coverings in public to help stop the spread, marking a significant change in messaging from the Trump administration.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 43 mins ago - Health