Is Third Time the Charm for Arkansas Medicaid Expansion?

None

MIAMI, FL - FEBRUARY 21: Dr. Martha Perez examines Maria Lebron in a room at the Community Health of South Florida, Doris Ison Health Center on February 21, 2013 in Miami, Florida. Florida Gov. Rick Scott reversed himself on February 20, and now is callling for an expansion of Medicaid to Florida residents under the federal Affordable Care Act. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
National Journal
Sophie Novack
See more stories about...
Sophie Novack
Feb. 19, 2014, 12:49 p.m.

With cov­er­age for 100,000 res­id­ents on the line, neither the Arkan­sas House nor the Sen­ate wants to be the first to ap­prove con­tinu­ing the state’s Medi­caid ex­pan­sion plan.

The Le­gis­lature is wrapped up this week in de­bates over re­new­ing fund­ing for the state’s “private op­tion” pro­gram, which ac­cepts fed­er­al funds for Medi­caid ex­pan­sion un­der the Af­ford­able Care Act and uses them to buy private plans on the ex­change.

The House voted 68-27 to ap­prove the fund­ing Wed­nes­day, but it was sev­en votes short of pas­sage. This fol­lowed a 70-27 House vote Tues­day.

Arkan­sas re­quires a 75 per­cent ap­prov­al to pass spend­ing bills, leav­ing the le­gis­la­tion in a kind of limbo un­til one side can muster a su­per­ma­jor­ity. Votes are con­tinu­ing this week un­til a few mem­bers cave.

Both the House and Sen­ate likely have the votes to ul­ti­mately pass the amended “private op­tion” plan, but each wants to wait for the oth­er to go first, ac­cord­ing to the Arkan­sas Times. Both cham­bers were ori­gin­ally sched­uled to vote on the bill Wed­nes­day, but the Sen­ate post­poned its vote.

“We’re just go­ing to wait on the House,” Sen­ate Pres­id­ent Pro Tem Mi­chael Lam­oureux said. “Just one more day. We’re not in any par­tic­u­lar hurry.”

Sen­ate lead­ers say they have the ne­ces­sary 27 votes to ap­prove the bill once it comes to a vote, though noth­ing can be cer­tain with such a nar­row mar­gin.

Mean­while, some say enough House mem­bers would flip their vote to ap­prove the bill, once it is passed in the Sen­ate. Re­pub­lic­an House Speak­er Davy Carter has said the House will con­tin­ue vot­ing un­til the bill is passed.

The Sen­ate is sched­uled to vote on the private op­tion Thursday morn­ing, with the House fol­low­ing in the af­ter­noon.

What We're Following See More »
‘PULLING A TRUMP’
GOP Budget Chiefs Won’t Invite Administration to Testify
1 days ago
THE DETAILS

The administration will release its 2017 budget blueprint tomorrow, but the House and Senate budget committees won’t be inviting anyone from the White House to come talk about it. “The chairmen of the House and Senate Budget committees released a joint statement saying it simply wasn’t worth their time” to hear from OMB Director Shaun Donovan. Accusing the members of pulling a “Donald Trump,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the move “raises some questions about how confident they are about the kinds of arguments that they could make.”

Source:
A DARK CLOUD OVER TRUMP?
Snowstorm Could Impact Primary Turnout
1 days ago
THE LATEST

A snowstorm is supposed to hit New Hampshire today and “linger into Primary Tuesday.” GOP consultant Ron Kaufman said lower turnout should help candidates who have spent a lot of time in the state tending to retail politicking. Donald Trump “has acknowledged that he needs to step up his ground-game, and a heavy snowfall could depress his figures relative to more organized candidates.”

Source:
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
A Shake-Up in the Offing in the Clinton Camp?
1 days ago
THE DETAILS

Anticipating a primary loss in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Hillary and Bill Clinton “are considering staffing and strategy changes” to their campaign. Sources tell Politico that the Clintons are likely to layer over top officials with experienced talent, rather than fire their staff en masse.

Source:
THE LAST ROUND OF NEW HAMPSHIRE POLLS
Trump Is Still Ahead, but Who’s in Second?
16 hours ago
THE LATEST

We may not be talking about New Hampshire primary polls for another three-and-a-half years, so here goes:

  • American Research Group’s tracking poll has Donald Trump in the lead with 30% support, followed by Marco Rubio and John Kasich tying for second place at 16%. On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders leads Hillary Clinton 53%-41%.
  • The 7 News/UMass Lowell tracking poll has Trump way out front with 34%, followed by Rubio and Ted Cruz with 13% apiece. Among the Democrats, Sanders is in front 56%-40%.
  • A Gravis poll puts Trump ahead with 28%, followed by Kasich with 17% and Rubio with 15%.
IT’S ALL ABOUT SECOND PLACE
CNN Calls the Primary for Sanders and Trump
3 hours ago
THE LATEST

Well that didn’t take long. CNN has already declared Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump the winners of the New Hampshire primary, leaving the rest of the candidates to fight for the scraps. Five minutes later, the Associated Press echoed CNN’s call.

Source:
×