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HomeSpotlight Story | Bird’s Eye View | Budget & Taxes | Politics & Leadership | Governors | Hot Issues | Once Around the Statehouse Lightly
Responding to Medicaid expansion advocates who are urging eligible Mainers to sign up for the insurance plan, Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) said he will reject those applications until lawmakers fund the program to his satisfaction. Expansion supporters have filed suit seeking to force the governor to adhere to a ballot measure authorizing that expansion endorsed by voters last fall.
All they got to do is give me the money and everything’s going to be fine,” he told the Associated Press. “I don’t know why the Legislature refuses to acknowledge that Medicaid is not free.”
Advocates point to the approximately $500 million in federal funds the state would receive to cover the expansion. But LePage counters that neither lawmakers nor the ballot measure have devised a way to pay for the state’s share, roughly $60 million annually. LePage told lawmakers he would not go along with anything that raised taxes, relied on budgetary gimmicks or dipped into the state’s rainy day fund. (BANGOR DAILY NEWS, PORTLAND PRESS HERALD, ASSOCIATED PRESS)