From today’s Argus Leader:
Without his support, the Republican-dominated Legislature won’t vote to give thousands of low-income South Dakotans Medicaid health coverage. But Daugaard said he’s unlikely to please hospitals, Democrats and activists by proposing a Medicaid expansion — at least this year.
“I probably am leaning against expansion,” Daugaard said. “As time passes, particularly during 2014, that will become clearer. Right now, it’s hard to know.”
Daugaard said he has unanswered questions about who these low-income people are. Of particular concern are roughly 26,000 South Dakotans who earn less than the poverty line, which is $11,170 per year for a single individual without kids.
“If you’re single, you need only work 30 hours at the minimum wage to come up above the poverty level,” Daugaard said. “I’m not oblivious to the human side of this. I just want to understand… who it is that’s going to be vulnerable here.”
And that’s a good point, considering that many that would be added to the welfare rolls via Medicaid under an expansion are able-bodied adults.