Maine, Medicaid, and the Gruber Principle

An aphorism much favored by my fellow dipsomaniacs goes thus: “Dogs are smarter than people. A dog won’t eat or drink anything that has made him sick in the past.” In other words, fill up Fido’s water bowl with Booker’s, let him slurp down enough to induce vomiting, and you’ll not get him near booze nor bowl again. What has this to do with Maine or Medicaid? Well, Maine experimented with Medicaid expansion 15 years ago, and it took the state a decade to recover from the hangover. Nonetheless, a majority of Maine’s voters approved another Medicaid expansion last Tuesday.
And it is no exaggeration to say that it took Maine 10 years to recover from its last Medicaid expansion. That debacle, initiated in 2002 by former Governor Angus King — who has since fled to D.C. where he now “serves” as a U.S. Senator — damaged Maine’s finances so badly

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