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Chamber endorses Medicaid expansion

By Karen Bouffard

From Detroitnews.com

March 21, 2013

The Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce has endorsed the Medicaid expansion proposed by Gov. Rick Snyder, despite opposition by many Republicans.

The chamber’s Executive Board voted to back the expansion Wednesday, the same day a House appropriations subcommittee advanced a community health budget bill that did not include the $1.3 billion in federal money to fully fund the program.

The Detroit Chamber’s endorsement is likely to sway some votes among GOP lawmakers because Republicans are generally aligned with business interests. “The Detroit Regional Chamber supports the Governor’s plan and thinks it will lead to lower costs for businesses and lead to savings to the state’s bottom line,” said Jim Martinez, director of communications.

Snyder is among more than a half dozen Republican governors who have come out in support of the expansion, which is a key component of the Affordable Care Act.

If approved by lawmakers, the income limit for Medicaid would be raised to 135 percent of the poverty line, adding about 450,000 more people to Michigan Medicaid rolls.