Gov. Rick Perry: Texas Will Not Participate in Medicaid Expansion

Texas Gov. Rick Perry directed a stern letter toward HHS and President Barack Obama's administration, saying his state will not expand Medicaid nor will it create a health insurance exchange — two components of the healthcare reform law he said "represent brazen intrusions into the sovereignty of our state," according to an Austin Statesman report.

In June, the Supreme Court upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, saying the individual mandate survived as part of Congress' power to tax. However, it ruled the Medicaid expansion was optional for states, and states would only lose out on Medicaid funds allocated in the PPACA if they did not comply.

Gov. Perry became the sixth Republican governor to opt out of the Medicaid expansion. Texas will be foregoing roughly $13 billion in federal Medicaid funds from 2014 to 2017, according to the report. The federal government will eventually have to step in to implement the health insurance exchange.


Texas has the highest uninsured rate in the country, as 25 percent of residents — or 6 million people — have no health coverage. State officials estimated the Medicaid expansion could add up to 2.3 million low-income Texas to the program by 2023.

While Republicans have supported Gov. Perry's move, the Texas Democratic Party said he is playing a political game.

"No person with a speck of intelligence would turn down billions in federal dollars that would be a boon to our economy and help Texans. But then again, this is Rick Perry," TDP spokeswoman Rebecca Acuña said in the report.

More Articles on Medicaid Expansion:

Florida, Wisconsin, Louisiana, Other States May Refuse Medicaid Expansion Under PPACA

What the Healthcare Law Ruling Means: 4 Points to Keep in Mind

HHS Issues Final Rule on Medicaid Expansion Under PPACA

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