ATR Urges Michigan Legislators to Reject Obamacare Medicaid Expansion
Americans for Tax Reform sent a letter to members of the Michigan House of Representatives, urging them to oppose legislation that would have the state go along with Obamacare's Medicaid expansion, which the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled is a matter in which states have a say. Below is the text of the letter sent by ATR President Grover Norquist to Michigan Legislators:
On behalf of Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) and our members across Michigan, I write today in strong opposition to the proposals to expand Medicaid spending in the manner proposed and incentivized by the federal legislative monstrosity that is Obamacare.
The United States Supreme Court has ruled that lawmakers in Lansing have the freedom to choose to opt out of this ill-advised expansion that is sold as a sweet deal for states, but is proven to be a sucker deal upon full examination of the proposal. Simply put, Medicaid in its current form is already growing at an unsustainable rate and the burden that Obamacare’s proposed expansion would place upon the Michigan would cripple the state economy and likely necessitate further rate hikes on Michigan taxpayers.
Even without being duped into Obamacare’s suggested expansion, Medicaid costs are growing at an untenable clip and your constituents are ultimately on the hook for covering these soaring costs.
Total federal and state Medicaid spending has ballooned from $70 billion in 1990 to an estimated $400 billion today: a whopping increase of 571 percent. Medicaid expansion in Michigan could wind up costing taxpayers $300 million by 2020 in either tax increases or reduced services.
In fact, state funds spent on Medicaid have already doubled in the past 15 years. Expanding this program only serves to diminish available funding for other public services such as education, transportation, and public safety.
Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion imposes hidden additional costs that will undoubtedly be passed down to taxpayers. As Michael Cannon, the Director of Health Policy Studies at the non-partisan Cato Institute, states:
“Medicaid discourages work and charitable effort among the taxpayers who fund it, while discouraging self-sufficiency and encouraging dependence among beneficiaries. Medicaid also imposes costs that stem from overuse of medical care, increasing costs for private payers, and giving patients poorer quality care than they could obtain with private coverage.”
Your counterparts in other state capitals, such as Texas, are wisely rejecting Obamacare’s suggested Medicaid expansion and other detrimental provisions of the bill, which includes 20 new or higher taxes on your constituents. These states are commendably doing all they can to prevent or mitigate the economic and financial havoc wrought by this law. Michigan legislators would be wise to do likewise.
This law is such a clear disaster – Democratic Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus has referred to it as “a train wreck” – the White House itself has gone so far as to simply ignore and delay key portions of this flawed law.
Members of the House have the ability to ensure the Great Lakes State remains as economically competitive as possible by rejecting Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion. Let’s instead pursue pro-growth policies that grow the economy, create jobs, and, in turn, enable people to get off Medicaid and actually have access to quality care.
Americans for Tax Reform will continue to monitor this issue closely and will educate your constituents as to how their representatives vote on this important matter.
To view a copy of the PDF letter, click here