John Kasich of Ohio is one of the most conservative governors in the country. In many ways, he’s been absolutely abominable, including trying to ban collective bargaining for unions and lots of different voter suppression tactics. But he seems to have found rationality, at least momentarily:
Gov. John Kasich of Ohio announced Monday that he’s going to expand Medicaid drastically under Obama’s health care law, the highest-profile red-state governor to agree to the new program so far.
“I, as all of you know, am not a supporter of Obamacare,” Kasich said at a Monday press conference. “But I think this makes great sense for the state of Ohio.”
Kasich says the decision will free up money to spend on mental health and other services — since the feds will pay for most of the expansion costs — and will keep everyone else’s health insurance premiums down because there won’t be so many uninsured people going to emergency rooms for their medical care.
Turning down hundreds of millions, maybe billions, in federal funds that will give health insurance to huge numbers of people in their states, as Rick Perry and Bobby Jindal have done, is not just stupid. It’s also cruel, self-defeating and harmful not only to those people but to everyone else in the state that will benefit from them having access to health care.