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Thread: Good idea gone bad

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    10-22-01
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    Good idea gone bad

    From today's WSJ:
    Mr. Ellis is one of more than 18,000 people who were cut from the Medicaid rolls after Arkansas embarked on a closely watched experiment in June 2018, when it became the only state to fully implement a work requirement for program recipients. The outcome in Arkansas could help shape the future of Medicaid, a state-federal program for low-income and disabled people that covers one in seven adults across the U.S. President Trump and Republicans promote the mandate as a way to rein in safety-net costs and increase employment.

    In a blow to the GOP, a federal judge in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in March blocked Arkansasí Medicaid work requirement, saying federal officials didnít adequately consider its potential to cause recipients to lose coverage.

    The federal government appealed the decision, and oral arguments over the Trump administrationís legal authority to approve Medicaid work requirements in Arkansas and Kentucky took place in appellate court Friday. The same lower-court judge also has ruled against Medicaid work requirements in Kentucky and New Hampshire.

    Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson said the work requirement was showing promising signs before the judge halted it, but officials hadnít gathered enough data to gauge its impact on employment.

    Lessons from Arkansasí 10-month test run illustrate the potential pitfalls for the growing number of states pursuing their own work requirements. The state reported estimated costs of implementing the mandate at $26.1 million, and it had spent more than $24 million between June 2017 and December 2018, based on a report this month from a federal watchdog agency. That doesnít include other costs, such as notifying enrollees of the change.
    Half baked idea that might fail because of that
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    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity, an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficultyĒ ---Sir Winston Churchill

    "Political extremism involves two prime ingredients: an excessively simple diagnosis of the world's ills, and a conviction that there are identifiable villains back of it all." ---John W. Gardner

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