ICYMI: Republicans Continue to Reject Free Money to Cover Uninsured Georgians

March 5, 2021

Majority of Georgians Supports Expanding Medicaid for 200,000+ Eligible Georgians

Today, Republicans in the Georgia State House struck down an amendment to the 2022 budget to expand Medicaid as part of their party’s long-standing commitment to denying health care coverage to Georgians who need it. The vote comes as a new poll released today shows a significant majority of Georgian support expanding Medicaid. 

The poll shows that Georgians support Medicaid expansion by 28 percentage points, with 55% supporting expansion and only 23% opposing it. Currently, 269,000 Georgians who are uninsured would be eligible for health care coverage under Medicaid expansion. According to a recent analysis, those Georgians “have no other realistic option for affording coverage. . .and are disproportionately Black.” 

Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government would cover 90% of the cost of Medicaid expansion in Georgia. But under the COVID-19 relief bill currently making its way through Congress, if Georgia were to expand Medicaid now, the state would also receive an increase in federal funds that would cover the rest of the cost of Medicaid expansion and then some. 

“There is no logical reason for Georgia Republicans to continue blocking Medicaid expansion. Not only is it the morally correct thing to do, but it is also fiscally responsible,” said Rebecca Galanti, spokesperson for the Democratic Party of Georgia. “While Republicans are playing partisan political games, health care coverage for 269,000 Georgians – many of whom are people of color – hangs in the balance. The discord between state leaders and Georgia voters when it comes to Medicaid expansion shows just how out of touch Georgia Republicans are.”

Medicaid expansion in Georgia by the numbers:

  • 55%: the percentage of Georgians who support Medicaid expansion.
  • 269,000: the number of currently-uninsured Georgians who would gain health care coverage under Medicaid expansion.
  • $1,360,000,000: the amount of money Georgia would receive under the COVID-19 relief bill if the state chooses to expand Medicaid – more than enough to cover Georgia’s costs to expand Medicaid, leaving $710,000,000 left over for the state. 

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