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ICYMI: Midlands Voices: Protect our most vulnerable and fiscal future by rejecting Medicaid expansion

Nov 5, 2018 by AFP

Americans for Prosperity State Director Jessica Shelburn, Kay Orr and Don Stenberg | Omaha World Herald

Shelburn is state director of Americans for Prosperity. Orr is a former Nebraska governor. Stenberg is the current Nebraska state treasurer.

This November, Nebraskans will vote on Ballot Initiative 427, which would expand Medicaid eligibility under Obamacare. This government expansion would threaten current Medicaid recipients, who are the most vulnerable and needy among us. It also would jeopardize our state’s fiscal future. It deserves a “no” vote.

It is estimated that Medicaid expansion would cost Nebraska $51 million the first year of full implementation, growing to almost $85 million in the year 2029, for a whopping $670 million over the 10 years. But if estimates are off by just 3 percent, we’re looking at another $98 million more over 10 years.

Most of the states that expanded Medicaid have experienced significantly higher enrollment and higher costs than what they projected. Ohio blew through its seven-year enrollment projections in just 10 months.

Nebraska would not be different.

The increased burden that this would put on our already strained budget will prevent the state from having more funds available for K-12 education. The fewer state dollars we had for K-12 education, the more the schools would rely on property taxes to make ends meet — which would mean higher property taxes.

Voters need to know they are making a choice that could risk taking resources and services away from Medicaid’s most vulnerable recipients, local communities and education.

Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion initiative is a lose-lose for taxpayers and the pregnant women, children, the elderly and the disabled that Medicaid was designed to serve.

Nebraskans have an opportunity to reject placing our state’s fiscal future at risk and protect our most vulnerable by voting “no” on ballot Initiative 427.

Click here to read the full op-ed.