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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Republican Medicaid Bill On Wednesday's Legislative Agenda

Montana Capitol.
William Marcus
Montana Public Radio

Wednesday at the Montana legislature, the Republicans lay out the start of their own version of Medicaid expansion. Republican Representative Nancy Ballance is carrying House Bill 455, which would extend state insurance coverage to people with disabilities, low-income parents and veterans.

She says this would only include about 10,000 of the approximate 70,000 Montanans without insurance, because she says many of those people are “working-age adults with no kids and no disabilities.”

“If you cover those people, then they end up stepping in line in ahead of these disabled people, veterans, low-income parents...”

She says later bills may cover those 60,000 left out of the loop, but this is the priority.

Opponents of this plan say everyone needs to be covered, ultimately saving the state money through hospital costs, and those 60,000 should not be viewed as one generalized group.

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