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As More Southerners Benefit From It, Medicaid Expansion Faces Congressional Death Threats

(Photo: Rochelle Hartman/cc/flickr)

Date on which North Carolina's newly sworn-in Gov. Roy Cooper (D) announced he'd take executive action to expand Medicaid, the public health insurance program for the poor, under the Affordable Care Act: 1/4/2017

Year in which North Carolina's Republican-controlled legislature passed a law barring the executive branch from expanding Medicaid under ACA, complicating Cooper's efforts: 2013

Number of North Carolinians who could benefit from expansion of Medicaid, which in that state is currently available only to children, people with small children, or those who are pregnant, disabled, or in a nursing home: up to 600,000

Amount of investment Medicaid expansion would bring to North Carolina: $2 billion to $4 billion

Number of good-paying new jobs it would create: 20,000 to 40,000

By continuing to reject Medicaid expansion, which its residents are already paying taxes for, estimated amount of federal funds North Carolina would forfeit through 2020: $15 billion

According to a Harvard Medical School study, number of North Carolinians who are dying each year because of the state's refusal to expand Medicaid: 1,100

Total number of states that have expanded Medicaid to date: 32

Of those 32 states, number in the South: 4*

Month in which Louisiana, under newly elected Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards, expanded its Medicaid program under ACA: 7/1/2016

Number of Louisianans who had enrolled in the program by September: 305,000

Date on which House Republicans said Vice President-elect Mike Pence was uniquely qualified to dismantle the ACA: 1/4/2017

Year in which Pence, as Indiana's governor, expanded Medicaid in his state under the law: 2015

Number of Indiana residents who gained access to Medicaid as a result: 320,000

Date on which Donald Trump, then running for Republican presidential nomination, tweeted that he opposed cuts to Medicaid: 5/7/2015

Number of times Trump has changed his opinion on the ACA since announcing his presidential bid: 8

Date by which House Republicans say they hope to send President Trump an ACA repeal bill: 2/20/2017

Number of Americans who stand to lose health care coverage if ACA's Medicaid expansion provision is scrapped: 11 million

Should Congress repeal Medicaid expansion, amount West Virginia alone stands to lose in federal funding from 2019 through 2023: $5.8 billion

Proportion of Americans who support allowing states to expand Medicaid under ACA: 8 in 10

Proportion of Trump voters who do: 2/3

* Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana and West Virginia

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Sue Sturgis

Sue Sturgis

Sue Sturgis is the Director and regular contributor to the Institute for Southern Study's online magazine, Facing South, with a focus on energy and environmental issues. Sue is the author or co-author of five Institute reports, including Faith in the Gulf (Aug/Sept 2008), Hurricane Katrina and the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (January 2008) and Blueprint for Gulf Renewal (Aug/Sept 2007). Sue holds a Masters in Journalism from New York University.

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