ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Applause filled a north St. Louis County church Thursday night, as state and local leaders call for an expansion of Medicaid in Missouri.
Backers including Governor Jay Nixon and St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley cited the budget director’s report that jobs created by expansion would generate an additional $40 million in tax revenue and say the lack of expansion could prompt companies and young workers to locate elsewhere.
State Representative Tommie Pierson says there’s also the humanitarian angle.
“If you can’t afford healthcare for your children, for parents, kids go to school sick and they can’t learn…that’s a part of our problem,” says Pierson.
Pierson says the only reason Missouri Republicans haven’t expanded Medicaid is because it’s connected to Obamacare.
“If you changed the name to Medicaid Reform, Medicaid Topform, to anything and they’d be for it. But they’re opposed to anything that is attached to Barack Obama,” says Pierson.