Who: The Guardian
What: Florida governor Rick Scott, one of the sharpest critics of President Obama’s healthcare law, announced late Wednesday that he wanted the state to participate in an optional portion of the law after all. Florida should accept federal funds to expand Medicaid coverage in the state, Scott said at a news conference, in a stunning reversal.
“While the federal government is committed to paying 100% of the cost of new people in Medicaid, I cannot, in good conscience, deny the uninsured access to care,” Scott said. The Republican-led legislature must approve the measure for it to take effect. Conservative opponents of “Obamacare” reacted with disappointment and anger.
The Obama healthcare law expands Medicaid eligibility to families with incomes at 133% of the poverty level. That could mean 1.95m more Florida enrollees over five years, when Medicaid and other subsidized programs are included, according to the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration.
Why: Scott’s seat is considered to be one of the most vulnerable in the country. With the lowest approval rating of any governor in the US leading up to another election, principles and idealogy were out the window in favor of realism.