Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) on Thursday stressed his state — and most others — would have to cut education spending, release inmates, impose new taxes and slash welfare programs in order to pay for Democrats’ proposed healthcare reforms.
Their legislation — which authorizes a manifest increase in Medicaid spending — would fall disproportionately on state governments that have struggled to balance their budgets amid this year’s economic slowdown, the governor said
“Every state is cutting [this and last year’s] budgets,” Barbour told reporters at a press conference this afternoon, predicting the Medicaid changes in particular would cost his state about $1.6 billion over the first six years.
“I don’t think you should expand Medicaid at all as part of the healthcare bill unless the federal government pays for it,” he added.