I just got out of a press conference with Congressman Joaquin Castro, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins and other Democratic leaders who urged Governor Perry and Republican leadership to accept Medicaid expansion.
Earlier this morning, Governor Perry, U.S Senator John Cornyn, and U.S. Senator Ted Cruz took a stubborn stand against the expansion. Governor Perry was quoted by the Dallas Morning News as saying “Texas will not be participating in Medicaid expansion.”
Political stunts like the one held today by Governor Perry make it clear that he is not getting the message. We need to stop playing politics with the health of our constituents. There is too much is at stake. We’ve tried Governor Perry’s plan for 12 years, and after 12 years of Governor Perry’s failed health care policies, we have the highest rate of uninsured in the nation with 6 million Texans without insurance. It’s time for a new plan. It’s time to expand Medicaid. If Republican Governors in Arizona, New Jersey, and Florida can put partisan politics aside and do what is best for their citizens, Texans have every right to expect their leaders to do the same.
It is the right thing to do for the 1.8 million Texans who will receive coverage. It’s the smart thing to do because of the $68 billion economic impact that would take place in just three years.
Congressman Castro challenged Governor Perry to “give up the swagger and get serious about Medicaid expansion.” I hope he heeds that call.