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AFP-MI Letter of Support: Prohibit Medicaid Expansion Under Obamacare, SB 41

February 11, 2013 J

Dear Senators Caswell, Jansen, and Colbeck:

On behalf of more than 87,000 Americans for Prosperity-Michigan activists, I am writing in strong support of your bill that would prohibit Michigan from expanding Medicaid under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare.

On Wednesday, February 6th, Governor Snyder announced that he supports the expansion of Medicaid in order to save money. According to the president’s health care law, the federal government will pay 100 percent of expenses for newly eligible individuals for the first three years, stepping down to 90 percent by 2020. Leveraging funding from the federal government seems like a great deal for Michigan but is misguided.

The federal government cannot afford these excessive obligations. And even if the government honors its impossible promises, Michigan taxpayers will still pay an additional $1.6 billion over the next 10 years just for the expansion.

Adding hundreds of thousands of Michigan residents to Medicaid is the exact wrong policy for our state. Although well-intentioned, the desire to expand Medicaid will do more harm than good. The plan ignores the realities of the Medicaid system.

Medicaid is broken. This costly system is ripe with problems that range from lower reimbursement rates for doctors to greater likelihood of death during surgery.

Adding hundreds of thousands of people to this system will only make these problems worse and does not qualify as real health care reform. The choice to forgo Medicaid expansion is the responsible one, and will guarantee Michigan residents more flexibility and control in the long-term.

Governor Snyder is breaking his promise to provide excellent customer service to the people of Michigan by placing them into a broken system.

If lawmakers are serious about improving health care and expanding coverage, then they should pursue reforms that embrace market mechanisms. Expanding Medicaid under President Obama’s health care law is entirely the wrong approach. Americans for Prosperity-Michigan is proud to support SB 41. I urge your colleagues to support this important legislation and look forward to working with you in the future.

Regards,

Scott Hagerstrom                                                                                                                                                                        State Director, AFP-Michigan

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