When Medicaid was first established as a limited, state-federal partnership, less than five million Americans used this program. Today nearly one in four are enrolled.  Unfortunately, Medicaid is failing patients; is a target for waste, fraud, and abuse; and is bankrupting both state and federal governments. 

 Not only is federal Medicaid spending a substantial driver of Washington’s over $14 trillion in national debt, state Medicaid spending now absorbs nearly a quarter of state government budgets, often forcing severe cuts to local priorities. Unfortunately, this situation is getting even worse with new burdensome regulations from Washington and the partisan health law’s unprecedented Medicaid entitlement expansions.

The result of these unreasonable Washington dictates? We are now facing the worst budget crisis since the Great Depression with a collective $175 billion shortfall, states are already being forced to make cuts to things like education and law enforcement.  It’s no wonder governors nationwide have asked for a repeal of Washington’s onerous new rules.  As if the current situation isn’t bad enough, the partisan health law’s Medicaid expansion will put another 25 million Americans in Medicaid and force states to spend at least another $118 billion through 2023.

Medicaid reform is a must and is something that can be achieved by working with states just like we did when we successfully overhauled the nation’s welfare system in 1996.  I’ve introduced legislation that answers the call from states across the country by fully repealing burdensome regulations, and I have asked the nation’s governors to join me in a comprehensive effort to reform the Medicaid program. My goal is to empower the states to design and implement innovative Medicaid solutions that work for their citizens.