26 States Call Medicaid Expansion "Unconstitutional"

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In a brief (pdf) filed with the Supreme Court Tuesday, the 26 states opposing President Barack Obama's Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act argued the law's Medicaid expansion is linked to the individual mandate and is unconstitutionally coercive because Medicaid is a voluntary program.

The states argued that, "while the [PPACA] purports to leave States' participation in Medicaid nominally voluntary, multiple aspects of the Act evince Congress' keen awareness that, in fact, no State will be able to reject its new terms and withdraw from the program. Most obviously, the [PPACA's] individual mandate requires Medicaid-eligible individuals to obtain and maintain insurance."

The brief went on to say that the individual mandate, like the Medicaid expansion, does not provide an alternative for individuals who want to obtain health insurance by other means.

The states' arguments against Medicaid will be heard when the Supreme Court hears the entire case in March.

Related Articles on Medicaid:

Ohio to Include Value-Based Care Language in 2013 Medicaid Contracts

Colorado Medicaid Rolls Reach Record High

Medicare, Medicaid Plans Have Boosted Health Insurers' Revenues by 6% Over Past Three Years

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