March 18, 2013

Former speaker opposes N.H. Medicaid expansion

Republican Rep. William O'Brien says the governor's plan is too costly and overreaching.

The Associated Press

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire's House is scheduled to vote this week on a bill that would prohibit the state from expanding Medicaid under the federal health care law.

New Hampshire's current program covers low-income children, parents with children, pregnant women, elders and people with disabilities.

The expansion adds anyone under age 65 who earns up to 138 percent of federal poverty guidelines, which is about $15,000 for a single adult.

Former House Speaker William O'Brien filed the bill to block the expansion supported by Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan.

O'Brien, a Mont Vernon Republican, argues that expanding Medicaid is unaffordable, unnecessary and amounts to an effort by the federal government to hijack state finances.

Opponents argue that New Hampshire should take advantage of federal funding being offered.


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