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This month's Health Tracking Poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows, yet again, that Republicans are essentially stingy bastards who don't want anyone who they determine is undeserving to get health care. The poll focused on Medicaid expansion and found strong support, 67 percent of all respondents, for the program that provides health care to the working poor, children, and low-income elderly nursing home patients.

It gets strong support, that is, except from Republicans. Almost 90 percent of Democrats support the idea of Medicaid expansion, along with two-thirds of independents. Sixty percent of Republicans, however, don't think poor people should have health care.

Chart showing breakdown of support/opposition to Medicaid expansion
Support erodes when when people are asked if their own state should expand Medicaid finding that "49 percent of people support expanding Medicaid in their own state while 43 percent say they prefer to keep their state's status quo." But there's potential for movement in those numbers. Support went from 49 percent to 59 percent among opponents when they were told that “this would mean many low‐income people in your state would be left without health insurance, and your state would be giving up additional federal dollars for covering its uninsured residents."

Expanding Medicaid would save states money in other ways, from reducing the amount of money spent to reimburse hospitals and doctors for care provided to people who can't pay at all, to shifting costs for some programs, like mental health care, to the expanded federally covered program.

As with every other aspect of the Affordable Care Act, education matters. President Obama and Democrats are going to have to talk about what the ACA is going to do for people, and what Medicaid expansion will do for their state. This poll shows that this education works.

But what it also shows is that Republican governors who intend to refuse Medicaid expansion are going to be starting out with a deficit of public support, with only their base really behind them.

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