States Ignore Biden’s Offer To Let Medicaid Pay
(RightWing.org) – When the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade in June, President Joe Biden didn’t take the challenge lying down. He quickly came up with a plan to use Medicaid to undermine state bans on abortion. There’s just one problem — states aren’t interested.
Smart story from @meganmesserly: "In the two months since President Joe Biden signed an executive order encouraging states to use the health insurance program to expand abortion access, no state has applied to do so." https://t.co/rZILy8tUP5
— Seung Min Kim (@seungminkim) October 5, 2022
On August 3, Biden signed an executive order authorizing Medicaid payments to cover the cost of traveling from a state that doesn’t allow abortion to one that does. White House decisions aren’t enough to make that actually happen, though. It’s down to state Medicaid agencies to actually apply for the waiver that allows them to fund abortion-related travel — and, so far, none of them have.
Journalism website POLITICO has contacted 24 state Medicaid agencies, all in those where abortion is still legal. None of them has applied for a waiver, one definitely isn’t going to, and 12 more are either “reviewing” the proposal or waiting for more guidance. The problem is Biden’s proposal isn’t very attractive to pro-abortion states. If they do apply for a waiver, they’ll end up paying costs for people from other states and, in return, could face lawsuits for violating the Hyde Amendment. This policy makes it illegal to use federal Medicaid money to pay for abortions except in cases of rape, incest, or where the mother’s life is in danger.
Biden’s executive order is asking states to spend money and put themselves in the line of fire, with nothing in return. It’s no surprise none of them seem enthusiastic.
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