Missouri’s Supreme Court has announced a ruling in favor of a path toward Medicaid expansion in Missouri.
Missouri voters approved Medicaid expansion in 2020, but the expansion was not included in the budget approved by legislators during the session. The contention of lawmakers was that the vote of expansion was against the constitution because voters cannot create new programs that are not funded. The decision was unanimous.
Medicaid expansion was initially to begin July 1st with the state’s new fiscal year. The expansion would raise income requirements and make an estimated 275,000 more Missourians eligible for Medicaid.
The supreme court’s opinion also stated that the legislature’s appropriations bills did not exclude funding for covering an expanded Medicaid population.
The American Cancer Society Action Network also praised the decision, says the increased eligibility will provide more access to vital health services.
12th District Missouri State Senator Dan Hegeman, the chairman of the Budget Committee, called the decision political and one that sets a dangerous precedent and diminishes the power of Missouri’s elected representatives.