Former presidential hopeful Rick Perry became the next in a line of Republican governors Monday to declare he will not implement key provisions of the Affordable Care Act, including insurance exchanges and the Medicaid expansion.
“If anyone had any doubt,” Governor Perry assured viewers in an interview on Fox News, “we wanted to put it clearly to bed that Texas wasn’t going to be a part of expanding socializing of our medicine.”
Texas was one of the 26 original states that filed a lawsuit against Obamacare, claiming the individual mandate and the Medicaid expansion requirements were unconstitutional. Though the states lost the battle over the mandate, which was upheld under the government’s taxing authority, the Supreme Court agreed on their quarrel with Medicaid and gave states the choice to opt out of the expansion.
As we’ve reported here on the Last Word, if all 26 contesting states refuse to implement the Medicaid expansion, 8.2 million Americans could lose Obamacare coverage.
Perry was quick to criticize not the only the expansion of Medicaid, but Medicaid itself: “Medicaid is a failed program. To expand this program is not unlike adding a thousand people to the Titanic.”
“Every Texan has healthcare in this state,” he went on to say, “from the standpoint of being able to have access to healthcare.”
Texas currently reigns as the state with the most uninsured people — 25% of its population, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.