Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly of Kansas announced a proposal on Monday that would legalize medical marijuana to raise the revenue required to expand the state’s Medicaid program. Under the proposal, nearly 200,000 state residents who do not currently have health insurance would gain eligibility for coverage.
“After nearly a year of challenges brought on by COVID-19, we need to use every tool at our disposal to protect the health of our workforce and our economy,” Kelly said in a statement from the governor’s office. “Getting 165,000 Kansans health care, injecting billions of dollars and thousands of jobs into our local economies, and protecting our rural hospitals will be critical to our recovery from the pandemic. By combining broadly popular, commonsense medical marijuana policy with our efforts to expand Medicaid, the revenue from the bill will pay for expansion.”
Obamacare Includes Medicaid Expansion
Under the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, Congress authorized an expansion of the Medicaid program to provide health insurance for more low-income families, with the federal government covering 90% of the cost and the states responsible for 10%. Kansas is one of 12 states who have not implemented the expansion, with leaders of the GOP-led legislature citing