Minn. Republicans to back off repeal of Medicaid expansion

by Kyle Potter

Just over a month after he launched a fight against Gov. Mark Dayton’s expansion of Medicaid in Minnesota, Sen. David Hann announced yesterday he’s letting the issue go, acccording to a Minnesota Public Radio blog.

“After some consideration we felt that it might be an easier approach just to not deal with that issue,” Hann told MPR. “Especially given the likelihood that the governor is not likely to sign a bill that repeals an action that he’s taken already.”

Dayton signed Minnesota up for $1 billion in federal Medicaid funds on Jan. 5. Called Medical Assistance here in Minnesota, Medicaid is a low-income health program.

Hann was quick to announce he would fight to repeal the use of Medicaid funding in the state after Dayton’s signature.

“This is bad policy, and I think it is very destructive of the idea that we are an independent, self-governing nation,” Hann told the Daily in an earlier story about changes in health care policy, before drawing back his repeal effort. 

However, the rest of Hann’s Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act is moving ahead in the Senate. That bill, which would strike the federal requirement that Minnesotans buy health insurance, passed through the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday.

Medicaid expansion will begin on March 1.