It’s the question dominating coverage of the 89th Arkansas General Assembly, and with good reason. The decision, thrown to the states by the Supreme Court, is one of the biggest the legislature has faced in recent memory.
At the core of the debate is whether more than 200,000 of the state’s neediest citizens will gain access to health insurance. But it’s also a question that will have a dramatic impact on the state’s fiscal future. Gov. Mike Beebe is for expansion, but needs support from three quarters of the legislature to accept it. He and other proponents say that it will create jobs and end up saving the state money; opponents believe that it will eventually cost the state more than we can afford.
The Expand-O-Meter is our our guesstimate of the state of the debate, which we’ll update frequently as new developments come along.
We're definitely closer to passing expansion than we've ever been, with legislation moving through the General Assembly and a significant group of Republicans actively pushing for the "private option."
Today’s chances of passing expansion: 37%Last week’s chances: 35%See here for previous entries on the Expand-o-Meter
Despite some giving up all hope that Republicans will ever really consider Medicaid expansion, the Expand-o-meter soldiers on!
Will the legislature approve Medicaid expansion? Introducing the Expand-o-meter, our guesstimate of the state of the debate, which we’ll update frequently as new developments come along. Today’s chances of passing expansion: 51%
Last week, Rep. Josh Miller, a Republican legislator from Heber Springs, spoke against the private option Medicaid expansion last week. He invoked FDR's New Deal — a "hand up," he said, not a "handout."
Scott Ellington, the prosecuting attorney for Arkansas's Second Judicial District, said in a recent interview that, "There are no ongoing investigations by governmental investigative authorities" concerning the West Memphis Three case. Ellington may be the only person on the planet who believes there is "closure" in my case.