Obamacare Express: How ‘Gun to the Head’ Turned Into Runaway Locomotive

In 2012, prompted by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, Barack Obama turned what had been a “gun to the head” of state lawmakers and governors into an act of extraordinary (if reckless) generosity. The then president offered the states “free money” — and lots of it — in return for their support of a central element in the administration’s Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. To make sense of the current debate over repeal and replacement of the controversial health care law, it pays to revisit this history.
As originally written, Obamacare would have forced every state to expand eligibility under Medicaid to able-bodied people making up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level… or face the loss of all federal matching funds (with the federal government historically putting up about $3 for every $2 coming from the states), including federal funds supporting more than 50 million pre-ACA Medicaid

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