By Jonathan Easley - 03/03/14 03:15 PM EST
The liberal nonprofit group MoveOn launched a campaign on Monday directly targeting some of the highest profile Republican governors in the country over their continued opposition to expanding Medicaid under ObamaCare.
“Welcome to Texas! Where Gov. Perry has denied 1,046,000 Texans health care and now all Texans are paying for it. It’s like a whole other country,” one billboard reads.
“Louisiana! Pick your passion! But hope you don’t love your health. Gov. Jindal is denying Medicaid to 242,000 people,” reads another.
The billboards also cite Govs. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Scott Walker (R-Wis.), and Dave Heineman (R-Neb.) by name, while calling out the whole of the Virginia legislature.
“MoveOn members will hold accountable the Republican governors and elected officials who continue to prevent millions of Americans from gaining access to health care,” said MoveOn executive director Anna Galland in a statement.
“Expanding Medicaid coverage so that every American has access to healthcare coverage will save these states money in the long run, and it is the right thing to do,” she added. “MoveOn members will not stop fighting until every American has access to affordable healthcare.”
Last week, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius lashed out at the governors in four Southern states that have some of the highest levels of uninsured: North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, and Texas, in particular, for “playing politics with people’s lives” by refusing to expand Medicaid under ObamaCare.
Republican governors and legislators argue the policy would ultimately drain state coffers by increasing Medicaid rolls, and they fear the federal government won’t keep its funding promise, leaving them on the hook.
Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government pays 100 percent of the costs of the state’s expansion for the first year, and most states wouldn’t pay more than 10 percent in future years.
So far 31 states — nearly a dozen of them run by Republican governors — have either accepted the Medicaid expansion under ObamaCare outright or worked with the administration to design an expansion that caters to a particular state's specific needs.