Florida's House Quits Early, At Impasse Over Medicaid Expansion : Shots - Health News Meanwhile, Gov. Rick Scott sued the federal government Tuesday, accusing it of coercing Florida to accept the expansion, or lose funding for other health programs for the poor.
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Florida's House Quits Early, At Impasse Over Medicaid Expansion

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Florida's House Quits Early, At Impasse Over Medicaid Expansion

Florida's House Quits Early, At Impasse Over Medicaid Expansion

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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Florida faces a classic political question. Governor Rick Scott says he is fiercely opposed to Obamacare. He is also fiercely in favor of taking federal health care money. So the question is how to get the cash while still rejecting the label. In particular, Governor Scott wants to say he rejected Obamacare's expansion of Medicaid. State lawmakers are divided and left town without deciding what to do. Here's Lynn Hatter of WFSU.

LYNN HATTER, BYLINE: The battle started over separate federal funding that reimburses hospitals treating uninsured patients. That $2 billion runs out in June, and the feds want Florida to expand Medicaid instead. Here's what Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell told WFSU.

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SYLVIA BURWELL: An important way to extend that coverage for those low-income individuals, as was passed in the Affordable Care Act, is this issue of Medicaid expansion.

HATTER: Governor Rick Scott has now sued the federal government. He says forcing Florida to expand Medicaid or lose the $2 billion is coercion. The Florida Senate has been ready to expand, but not the House. Here's Representative Richard Corcoran.

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RICHARD CORCORAN: Here's my message to the Senate. They want us to come dance? We're not dancing. We're not dancing this session. We're not dancing next session. We're not dancing next summer.

HATTER: Senator Andy Gardiner says he's disappointed.

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ANDY GARDINER: The House didn't win. The Senate didn't win. The taxpayers of the state of Florida lost.

HATTER: Scott now has to call a special session to finish the budget. For NPR News, I'm Lynn Hatter in Tallahassee.

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