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Advocates Hope Election Results Remove Hurdles To Medicaid Expansion

(AP Photo/Steve Helber)

  Recent wins by state Democrats are giving new energy to the fight to expand Medicaid. Advocates held a series of events around the state Friday to draw attention to the issue.

A small group from the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy gathered outside Virginia’s capitol Friday, calling on lawmakers to expand access to state funded healthcare. Neill Caldwell has lobbied the legislature for years on the issue. But after November’s elections, the Republican majority is down to just one seat. Caldwell is hopeful someone could change their mind.


“There are some moderate Republicans who in their hearts know that this is a real solid common sense decision," Caldwell said. "Would make a lot of difference in the Virginia economy.”


A new report from the Commonwealth Institute estimates Virginia could lose out on $138 million from the federal government over the next two years. But a spokesman for Republican leader Kirk Cox says free and guaranteed money from Washington, can always disappear.

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.

Mallory Noe-Payne is a Radio IQ reporter based in Richmond.