Weekly Round-Up: A Closer Look at Medicaid Expansion Under the Affordable Care Act

With the Republican National Convention wrapping up and the Democratic National Convention set to begin, voters are hearing drastically different perspectives on Obamacare.

In this week’s edition of the Bloomberg BNA Weekly State Tax Report, A ssistant Managing Editor Steven Roll and Editor Deborah Swann talk to January Angeles, a Senior Policy Analyst at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, about the United States Supreme Court’s decision in National Federation of Independent Business et al. v. Sebelius, Secretary of Health and Human Services, et al.and how the Court’s holding on the Medicaid expansion is a great deal for states.

In National Federation, the Court ruled on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, and struck down, as unconstitutional, that part of the Medicaid expansion provision which withdraws existing Medicaid funding to states that choose not to participate in the new program expanding health care to citizens whose incomes fall below certain thresholds. 

A ccording to Angeles, the Medicaid expansion is a great deal for the states. And states that traditionally have had the stingiest Medicaid programs and have not expanded them very much, such as Florida and Alabama, have the most to gain from the Medicaid expansion, Angeles said.

The federal government will pay 100 percent of the costs of covering people who will be “newly eligible” for Medicaid for years 2014 through 2016, Angeles explained. These are persons who would not be eligible under their states' current programs, she said. After 2016, states will start paying some of these costs, but the federal government will always cover at least 90 percent, she said.

When people don't have insurance, they are worse off and so is the state's economy, Angeles said. “People with Medicaid are much more likely to have a regular source of health care and to have seen a doctor in the last six months than people without insurance.”  They have financial security when a catastrophic illness hits, she said. And, a new study tells us that when states expanded Medicaid in the past, mortality rates fell, she explained. “Medicaid literally saves lives. In turn, a strong, healthy workforce is a key building block for a strong state economy .”

The complete interview with Angeles can be read in its entirety here.

In other developments…

State and local tax deductions , by Nick Kasprak of the Tax Foundation.

Taxpayer loss in Illinois amnesty interest case covered in new Horwood Marcus & Berk  memo. 

U.S. Census Bureau releases its findings on 2011 state government tax collections .

California defies lower-tax Texas in creating more jobs , byJames Nash and Darrell Preston of Bloomberg News

Amazon.com to begin collecting sales tax in Pennsylvania , the Chicago Tribune reports.

Christie’s New Jersey Record: Reality Check , by Bloomberg News

Compiled by Priya D. Nair
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