The Missouri Supreme Court has rejected a request to have a Medicaid expansion court case transferred to the high court. The decision ends an attempt by conservative group Americans for Prosperity to get the issue kicked off the August primary election ballot.

Missouri Medicaid expansion effort escapes election ballot removal attempt

The organization, along with United for Missouri, filed lawsuits contending the measure unconstitutionally requires the state to spend money without providing a revenue stream to pay for it.

Americans for Prosperity-Missouri State Director Jeremy Cady issued the following statement:

“The Western District Court of Appeals clearly held that the Medicaid Expansion Initiative on the August ballot does – and could – not infringe upon the Legislature’s exclusive right to set spending priorities through the appropriation process, and took its proponents at their word that Amendment 2 of the Missouri Constitution would not do so. While this was not the decision we were seeking, the rationale underlying the Court’s decision, that the separation of powers will be respected, should be viewed as a win for Missourians.”

Healthcare for Missouri’s plan would let Missourians earning up to $18,000 annually qualify for state-funded health insurance – increasing the state’s Medicaid rolls by about 230,000.

Attorney Chuck Hatfield, who’s representing the pro-expansion side, tells Missourinet he believes the courts have made the correct decision.

“An issue like expanding healthcare is a matter for the voters and the Court should not stop the voters from having their say at the ballot box,” he says in a written statement.

Missouri is one of 14 states without Medicaid expansion.

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