Report: Christie to accept ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion for New Jersey

posted at 2:41 pm on February 26, 2013 by Allahpundit

Alternate headline: “CPAC was right.”

I’ve joked before about him teaming up with Bloomberg on some kind of billionaire-bankrolled No Labels third-party effort. The joke’s less funny every day.

Gov. Chris Christie will expand the state’s Medicaid program to cover 300,000 uninsured New Jersey residents, The Star-Ledger learned today.

The governor’s new budget, which he plans to unveil at joint session of the Legislature this afternoon, also relies on state revenue growth of 4.9 percent and delays some property tax rebates for local taxpayers, according to three sources with knowledge of the budget plan who spoke on the condition of anonymity…

[T]he Republican governor, a critic of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, could reap up to $300 million by expanding the state program in the coming budget year…

The revised Medicaid program would shift 100 percent of the costs to the federal government for these new enrollees for the first three years, then gradually taper it to 90 percent. The state could expect $1.7 billion a year to cover the costs.

Via the Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes, here’s what Christie had to say about Medicaid in 2011, when he was still a few years away from facing re-election in his highly Democratic home state:

And let me tell you what the truth is. What’s the truth that no one is talking about-here is the truth that no one is talking about: you’re going to have to raise the retirement age for social security. Oh I just said it and I’m still standing here! I did not vaporize into the carpeting and I said it! We have to reform Medicare because it costs too much and it is going to bankrupt us. Once again lightning did not come through the windows and strike me dead. And we have to fix Medicaid because it’s not only bankrupting the federal government, it’s bankrupting every state government. There you go. If we’re not honest about these things, on the state level about pensions and benefits and on the federal level about social security, Medicare, and Medicaid, we are on the path to ruin.

And via Red State’s Dan McLaughlin, here he was last year on Medicaid and ObamaCare:

Responding to a question, Christie said, “First of all, I was glad that the Supreme Court ruled that extortion is still illegal in America — and that’s a relief because Obamacare on Medicaid to the states was extortion.”

“It essentially said, ‘You expand your program to where we tell you, and if you don’t, we’re taking the rest of your money away.’ Well, that’s extortion,” Christie said.

The Affordable Care Act originally called for states to lose federal funding for Medicaid if they refused to expand the program.

Christie claimed that New Jersey has the second most expensive Medicaid program in the country, and questioned how much more the state’s program could be expanded.

Evidently he’s done questioning it. His speech to the state about his budget plans is set for 3 p.m. ET; Christie fans on Twitter are watching and waiting to see if he pairs his big Medicaid announcement with plans for reform. In rejecting a similar expansion of Medicaid for Wisconsin, Scott Walker announced that instead he would re-open the state low-income health-care program to new enrollees (it had previously been capped) while lowering the income ceiling on eligibility for the program. Result: More desperately poor people get Medicaid while those a bit above the poverty line move to the federal health-care exchanges for subsidized coverage. Unlike Walker, Christie’s going to take the money, but he’ll have to say something reform-minded to preserve what little fiscal-conservative credibility he has left. NRO’s Robert Costa says that’s the plan:

Assuming that’s true, it’ll cement Christie’s identity as the foremost member of the Brooksian “big government isn’t the problem, it just needs to work better” school of conservatism. While we wait, via Mediaite, here’s Joe Scarborough being very Joe Scarborough-ish about Christie’s CPAC snub. Exit quotation from ACU board member Morton Blackwell: “He is a Republican, but I don’t think he would accurately be described as a conservative.”


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Comment pages: 1 2

I guess he’s decided he’s rather be governor than president.

petefrt on February 26, 2013 at 3:43 PM

He would’ve never won anywhere in the south during the primaries.

Down here he comes across as just another obnoxious liberal.

workingclass artist on February 26, 2013 at 4:19 PM

“He is a Republican, but I don’t think he would accurately be described as a conservative.”

But, but, but…he yells at public employees…he’s just got to be the real deal!

/s

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 26, 2013 at 4:41 PM

Hey Reince! I just filled out the questionaire you sent me. Run…do not walk away from Chris Christie. Put Karl Rove out to pasture. Rand Paul 2016

psychocyber on February 26, 2013 at 5:12 PM

Under normal circumstances we are not usually blaming the governor of any state for how many people are on medicaid. Legislatures, generally control the state’s Medicaid.

Fleuries on February 26, 2013 at 5:20 PM

Christie will switch parties and be a Democrat within 2 years.

albill on February 26, 2013 at 5:35 PM

workingclass artist on February 26, 2013 at 4:19 PM

True dat.

avagreen on February 26, 2013 at 6:20 PM

But in this instance, expanding Medicaid by 104,000 citizens in a program that already serves 1.4 million, is the smart thing to do for our fiscal and public health. If that ever changes because of adverse actions by the Obama Administration, I will end it as quickly as it started.

Talk about worming your way out…..

itsspideyman on February 26, 2013 at 6:35 PM

Just as there is the open question of what would Obama do differently than what he has done and is doing if he admitted that he was a Leftist out to destroy the United States; there is the question of what exactly, other that a couple of parochial in-state food fights, would Christie have done differently if he was in fact an admitted Leftist Democrat?

And what does it say about the Institutional Republican party that they are having seizures at the prospect that his actual conduct would be part of the evaluation of his fitness for office by the peasants?

Subotai Bahadur on February 26, 2013 at 6:39 PM

So more liberal crap is blasted out of Orca’s blowhole.Quick, somebody push him back out into the ocean to save him,and us!

redware on February 26, 2013 at 6:58 PM

Im in Jersey and everyone in my office hates Christie..but for vastly different reasons, the libs think hes a fire breathing right winger, and I KNOW hes the worst kind of RINO and will never get my vote again. Amazing how we can all agree sometimes.

lostinjrz on February 26, 2013 at 7:04 PM

Just be aware that our republican governors are under a liberal microscope to tell you that Obama is right, don’t indulge the liberals by paying attention here and eating our own.

In a fantasy world I want them all to say they won’t take the medicaid money. I am not sure in the real world that they can, there is a bigger demand now than when Obama took office. Obama is the Medicaid Foodstamp President. Blame Obama.

Fleuries on February 26, 2013 at 7:36 PM

It must be hard not having a soul. Or just being a wh*re. Take your pick.

SouthernGent on February 26, 2013 at 8:14 PM

F*ck you, Christie.

That’s about all I can sum up with at this point.

Midas on February 26, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Anyone ping Coulter about this f*ckwit buddy of hers lately?

Midas on February 26, 2013 at 8:16 PM

…dumbazz fatazz!

KOOLAID2 on February 26, 2013 at 8:18 PM

Let me be clear,

RedRobin145 on February 26, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Geez, now he’s using Obummer’s hackneyed phraseology?

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 26, 2013 at 9:00 PM

Allahpundit, why do you keep giving us this Scarborough MSNBC crap? It is just one RINO blowhard talking about another RINO blowhard. Give me a break.

Theophile on February 27, 2013 at 12:53 AM

Comment pages: 1 2