Jan 10, 2020

With Kansas deal, Medicaid expansion marches on

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Kansas will likely become the 37th state — 38th if you count D.C. — to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Driving the news: The state's Democratic governor and Republican Senate leader announced a deal yesterday to expand the program, though it still needs to get through the state legislature.

Why it matters: The states still holding out against expansion are the super holdouts, so each one is a pretty tough sell at this point. But we're seeing a wave of even them starting to get on board, and Kansas is a big part of that trend.

  • Missouri and Oklahoma will have expansion initiatives on the ballot in 2020, and it remains a close fight in North Carolina.

Details: Kansas' expansion deal does not include work requirements — something of a surprise in such a conservative state, though work requirements aren't faring well in court. 

  • It does include a $25-per-month premium, which advocates won't love, but probably can live with. And there's no lockout for people who don't pay. 

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Trump vs. Medicaid

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

It may not get the most attention, but Medicaid is the prime target of the Trump administration’s health care agenda.

Why it matters: Medicaid covers about 70 million people — more than Medicare. It’s the biggest item in many states’ budgets. It is a huge part of the health care system, and the Trump administration has been fully committed, since day one, to shrinking it.

A little-noticed Medicaid proposal could have huge consequences

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Major health industry groups, governors and state Medicaid directors have all raised significant concerns with a Trump administration proposal that would change the rules and oversight of some forms of state Medicaid financing.

Why it matters: Billions of dollars are on the line for both states and providers, which they say in turn threatens the health care of some of America's most vulnerable people.

Go deeperArrowFeb 3, 2020 - Health

Super Bowl: Trump criticized for congratulatory tweet to wrong state

President Trump quickly congratulated the Kansas City Chiefs for representing the "Great State of Kansas ... so very well" on Sunday night for beating the San Francisco 49ers to win the Super Bowl LIV.

  • But before he could delete his tweet and repost, many critics noted that the Chiefs play in Missouri, including current and former Democratic politicians in the state and conservative lawyer George Conway, husband of counselor to President Trump, Kellyanne Conway.

Go deeper: Memorable Super Bowl 2020 ads