March 3, 2020

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Kansas, Latest News

ICYMI: Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly Working to Expand Accessible Health Care to 150,000 Kansans

Democratic Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is urging the Kansas legislature to pass her Medicaid expansion plan by appearing with community leaders across the state this week. If the bill passes, it will expand health care access to 150,000 residents in the state. Kelly reached a bipartisan compromise on Medicaid expansion with the legislature in January, but Republican leaders like Sen. Susan Wagle are blocking the bill as part of a partisan political stunt, attaching the passage of Medicaid expansion to the passage of an anti-abortion amendment.

Wagle’s fellow Republicans disagree with the immoral blockade of the Medicaid expansion compromise. Senate Republican Leader Jim Denning made joint appearances with Gov. Kelly this week in support of the bill, and three past Republican Senate presidents wrote an op-ed saying that Wagle “seems more focused on personal political gain than governing – and at significant cost to the people and future of our great state.”

Wagle and her cronies appear to be taking a cue from Republicans in North Carolina, who are currently blocking Medicaid expansion in their state, despite evidence showing that the majority of North Carolinians support Gov. Cooper and his Medicaid expansion plan. Some advice: we don’t recommend following in the footsteps of North Carolina Republicans – their divisive scare tactics earned them poor marks from local media and made Gov. Roy Cooper the most popular major elected official in North Carolina.

Gov. Kelly is one of 24 Democratic governors across the country who are working to expand access to affordable health care.

Read more about Gov. Kelly’s push for Medicaid expansion below::

The Wichita Eagle: Kelly, appearing with Denning, slams ‘immoral’ blockade of Kansas Medicaid expansion

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, and Senate Republican Leader Jim Denning ramped up a pressure campaign Monday to break Senate President Susan Wagle’s blockade of their Medicaid expansion compromise, which Kelly called “immoral.”

If it passes, the bipartisan Medicaid deal would represent a signature achievement for Kelly and Denning, extending health care coverage to upwards of 130,000 low-income Kansans. But Republican opponents have for weeks thwarted action on the measure, in response to the Legislature’s failure to advance an anti-abortion amendment to the state constitution.

Wagle, aided by the Republican chairman of the Senate health committee, has stopped expansion legislation from reaching the Senate floor, where it commands majority support. But Kelly and Denning say they are perhaps only a single vote away from breaking the gridlock.

Shawnee Mission Post: Gov. Kelly, Sen. Denning make pitch for Medicaid expansion compromise

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly and Sen. Majority Leader Jim Denning of Overland Park made joint appearances at two events in Wichita today as part of an effort to publicize their proposed compromise on Medicaid expansion.

Proponents of the deal, which would expand access to healthcare coverage for 150,000 Kansas, had high hopes for the bipartisan deal heading into this legislative session. But Republican legislative leaders in both the House and Senate have held up consideration of the bill until the passage of the “Protect them Both” bill, which would put a Constitutional amendment about the Supreme Court’s ability to weigh in on abortion access issues before Kansas voters.

KAKE: Gov. Kelly, Senator ask for your help in expanding Medicaid

“This is the right thing to do,” said Charles McKinzie.  “Not only is it good for the state from a financial standpoint, but this is the moral, right thing to do.”

A key issue in the legislative session, came to Wichita Monday.  As the battle over abortion and Medicaid expansion continues at the Statehouse, supporters are turning to you for help.  They traveled to Wichita to urge voters to lobby their lawmakers to get Medicaid expansion moving again.

KSN: Kansas Governor and Senate Majority Leader hold bipartisan Medicaid expansion discussion with Wichita community leaders

Governor Laura Kelly and Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning held two public events in Wichita Monday to discuss their bipartisan compromise to expand the state’s Medicaid program, KanCare.

“Medicaid expansion would make healthcare accessible to 150,000 more Kansans,” Governor Kelly said. “It is imperative we get this done. We cannot delay expansion any longer.”

The compromise (Senate Bill 252), was introduced in January 2020 and would provide healthcare to 150,000 working Kansans, has stalled in the legislature despite being favored by the majority of legislators.

“We should not be playing political games when lives are on the line. We have a moral obligation to make sure Kansans are receiving access to affordable healthcare,” Governor Kelly said.

KWCH: With Medicaid Expansion in gridlock, plan supporters hit the road

Democratic Governor Laura Kelly and Republican Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning visited Wichita on Monday. They spoke before hospital administrators and faith leaders, pushing for an end to the gridlock for the Medicaid Expansion.

It comes nearly two months after they initially released their bipartisan plan for expansion.

“It’s a good piece of policy. It touches ⅙ of the Kansas economy, gives healthcare to the public sector, which is Medicaid, and it can reduce healthcare premiums by a third on the individual market,” said Sen. Denning.