Capitol Preview: What’s Next for Arkansas’ Medicaid Work Requirement?

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The future of Arkansas’ Medicaid Expansion Program is in question with the State House voting down its budget.

Days after a federal judge blocked the program’s work requirement, many Republicans who voted against the bill said there were too many unknowns in the wake of the work requirement ruling.

Governor Asa Hutchinson is publishing for a speedy appeal. 

In the meantime, a lot hangs in the balance as we wait to see if lawmakers can find the votes to approve the Medicaid budget.

“Wherever they fall on the ideological spectrum with the work requirement or Arkansas Works in general, the point is, this will create a huge hole in our budget if we don’t pass it, the governor will have to go back to the drawing board on the tax cuts, the road plan, everything, if this gets torpedoed,”  Democratic Party of Arkansas Chairman Michael John Gray, said. 

“The work requirement was a big issue in helping it get the supermajority that it needs to pass, and now I think, rightly so, you see a lot of members wanting to take step back so they can have an understanding of what they’re really doing to appropriate the money and what the legal situation surrounding it,” GOP Strategist Bill Vickery, said. 

So what comes next? You can see the full discussion on this issue on “Capitol View”, Sunday Morning at 8:30, right before “Meet the Press”.

Original Story: 

The Arkansas House votes down the budget for the state’s Medicaid Expansion Program following a federal judge’s decision to block work requirements. 

The Senate passed the appropriation for the Department of Human Services right before the ruling came down, but fell short of the 75 votes needed in the house. 

After the vote, the House Speaker and Governor were both optimistic of a re-vote early next week.

They’re also hoping for an expedited appeal of the judge’s decision. 

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