In 2009 and 2010 President Barack Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius designed and championed the largest expansion of the welfare state since the New Deal with little more than political force and broken promises. While the American people are forced to accept Obamacare until it can be repealed, the Supreme Court empowered states to accept or reject Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion. So far 20 states have said no.
While Sebelius resigned in the shadow of a disastrous roll-out of healthcare.gov, her more damaging legacy is the temptation for state leaders to embrace a bigger welfare state and accept an injection of federal dollars funded by Medicare cuts and deficit spending. Medicaid expansion, like Obamacare, fails to deliver on its promises of quality health care that improves the health of enrollees. Even more troubling, ballooning Medicaid expansion costs threaten every other service and will trap millions in a cycle of dependency and poverty.
That’s why I’m excited I have an opportunity to confront Sebelius face to face this evening in Kansas, and finally hold her accountable for the troubling legacy she’s left behind for America.