Indiana on Tuesday announced plans to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act after securing concessions from the Obama administration that could pave the way for other Republican-led states to widen health coverage for low-income residents.
Gov. Mike Pence is the latest Republican to opt into the health law’s expansion of Medicaid despite his party’s opposition to the legislation. His move could prompt up to a half-dozen other GOP-led states to follow suit, including Florida, Tennessee and Alabama, by giving them a model to follow. Under Indiana’s agreement, the state can require some Medicaid enrollees to contribute toward their care.
The expansion decision by Mr. Pence, who has been mentioned as a 2016 presidential candidate, is the latest example of how the GOP is trying to broaden its reach by appealing to lower earners. It also signals a growing willingness by the Obama administration to cut deals with states in order to expand insurance coverage under the 2010 health law after the Supreme Court hampered that effort. Twenty-seven other states have agreed to use federal dollars to expand Medicaid.