Kemp to Campaign with Former Governors Who Expanded Medicaid, Refuses to Expand Access in Georgia

May 13, 2022

Brian Kemp announced campaign events with notable GOP figures like former Vice President and Indiana Governor Mike Pence and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, both of whom expanded Medicaid during their terms as governor to provide health care access for hundreds of thousands in their respective states. But as he prepares to campaign with the former governors, Kemp remains opposed to expanding Medicaid, reaffirming his cruel commitment to denying coverage to over 500,000 Georgians who would gain access to lifesaving care.

38 states — including many under Republican governors — and Washington D.C. have expanded Medicaid, providing significant benefits for those gaining coverage.

“As Brian Kemp announces campaign events with Mike Pence and Chris Christie, voters must be reminded: as former governors, both expanded Medicaid to provide health coverage to hundreds of thousands of Americans — something Kemp has repeatedly refused to do. Kemp’s staunch and heartless opposition to Medicaid expansion is keeping over 500,000 people from accessing lifesaving care, blocking 64,000 new jobs from being created, and sending Georgians’ hard-earned tax dollars to fund Medicaid expansion in other states,” said Max Flugrath, spokesman for the Democratic Party of Georgia.

The facts on Medicaid expansion:

  • Expanding Medicaid would provide over 500,000 Georgians with access to affordable health care and help the state save on uncompensated care costs, which in 2019 alone cost Georgia hospitals $2.7 billion.
  • Medicaid expansion would be the single largest economic development initiative in Georgia’s history, creating over 64,000 jobs, including 28,800 in health care, 4,900 in construction, 6,500 in retail, 2,000 in finance and insurance, and 21,900 in various other other sectors.
  • With 9 rural hospitals closing since 2010, including two which closed during the pandemic, Georgia ranks 6th in states with most rural hospital closures and is the 3rd worst for rural hospital stability.
  • Georgia is one of only 12 states that has refused to expand Medicaid. More than 1.5 million Georgians lack health insurance coverage and our uninsured rate is the 2nd highest in the nation at 14.5%.
  • The refusal to expand Medicaid has led to Georgia missing out on $21 billion in federal health care funds. Our tax dollars are going to other states to cover other Americans whose governors aren’t putting politics over people’s lives.
  • Medicaid expansion would not make anyone ineligible for private insurance. Studies have shown that Medicaid expansion reduces health care costs across the board, including for those on Medicaid and those with private insurance.

Read more about the positive impact Medicaid expansion would have on Georgia’s rural communities, Georgians’ health outcomes, the state’s uninsured rate, and Georgia’s economy.

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