By a 59% margin, Maine voters decided Tuesday to expand Medicaid in Maine through MaineCare for persons under the age of 65 and with incomes equal to or below 138 percent of the federal poverty line. Governor LePage stated that he will not implement that law until the Maine Legislature can fund it.

In his statement released the morning after the election, LePage made his stance clear.

The last time Maine experimented with Medicaid expansion in 2002 under then-governor Angus King, it created a $750 million debt to hospitals, resulted in massive budget shortfalls every year, did not reduce emergency room use, did not reduce the number of uninsured Mainers and took resources away from our most vulnerable residents—the elderly and the intellectually and physically disabled.

Credit agencies are predicting that this fiscally irresponsible Medicaid expansion will be ruinous to Maine’s budget. Therefore, my administration will not implement Medicaid expansion until it has been fully funded by the Legislature at the levels DHHS has calculated, and I will not support increasing taxes on Maine families, raiding the rainy day fund or reducing services to our elderly or disabled.  -Governor Paul LePage

 

Now the ball is back in the legislature's court who has tried many times, unsuccessfully to expand Medicaid, each time getting the veto from Governor LePage.