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New Hampshire House to vote on Medicaid expansion ban

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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — The House votes Wednesday on former House Speaker William O’Brien’s bill to bar New Hampshire from expanding Medicaid under the federal health care law.

O’Brien, a Mont Vernon Republican, argues that expanding Medicaid is unaffordable, unnecessary and amounts to an effort by the federal government to hijack state finances.

But bill opponents argue that New Hampshire should act now to take advantage of federal funding being offered under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).

Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan supports the expansion which would reduce the number of uninsured residents from roughly 170,000 to 71,000.

New Hampshire’s current program covers low-income children, pregnant women, parents with children, elders and people with disabilities. The expansion adds anyone under age 65 who earns up to 138 percent of federal poverty guidelines, which is about $15,000 for a single adult


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