Poll: Support growing for Utah's Medicaid expansion ballot measure

Poll: Support growing for Utah's Medicaid expansion ballot measure
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Support for a ballot measure to expand Medicaid in Utah has grown among state voters in recent months, according to a new poll.

The Salt Lake Tribune-Hinckley Institute of Politics poll found 59 percent of voters support the measure, which would extend coverage to about 150,000 people in the state.

A similar survey conducted in June found 54 percent of voters supported the measure.

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The new poll was conducted by the Hinckley Institute from Oct. 3 to 9. It included responses from 607 registered Utah voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points, according to the Tribune.

Republican state lawmakers are opposed to the ballot measure, arguing that expanding Medicaid will destroy the state’s budget and lead to bankruptcy. According to local news outlets, one state senator this week said he would introduce legislation to repeal the expansion if the ballot measure passes.

The ballot measure is competing with a plan backed by Utah Gov. Gary Herbert (R) to expand Medicaid only in part. Known as a “partial expansion,” that plan would expand Medicaid up to 100 percent of the federal poverty line, far less than the traditional expansion of up to 138 percent.

The partial expansion plan is backed by state and national Republicans, including Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyUtah New Members 2019 The Hill's 12:30 Report — Sponsored by Delta Air Lines — Leadership elections in Congress | Freshman lawmakers arrive | Trump argues he can restrict reporter access Rick Scott appears with GOP senators, ignores voter fraud question as recount continues MORE, who is running for Senate. But it would need approval from the Trump administration, which has never approved such an idea and could be reluctant to approve any expansion of Medicaid.