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Medicaid's money grab

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Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
 

Remember ObamaCare's massive Medicaid expansion, which was supposed to be “free” in states that took the bait? Well, it's anything but free for some low-income recipients with homes and other assets who don't read the fine print.

States can recover the cost of health care after the death of recipients — those clients between the ages of 55 and 64 — by going after their assets.

ObamaCare's cheerleaders point out that this little known “death debt” policy has been part of Medicaid in some states since 1993. What they can't dismiss so quickly is that this not-so-insignificant stipulation affects a dramatically larger cohort under ObamaCare's carrot-dangling Medicaid expansion.

In defense, Matt Salo, executive director of the National Association of Medicaid Directors, tells The Washington Post, “There's no way any state is going to see it as cost-effective or politically sensible to do that.” Then why didn't ObamaCare's underwriters simply remove the stipulation?

More importantly, why is it OK to go after the assets of Medicaid recipients and not people who get taxpayer subsidies through the exchange plans? Obviously the oracles of ObamaCare have some awfully strange notions about fairness.

Some states that expanded Medicaid under ObamaCare have revised their “estate recovery” policies. But most have not — and probably won't until enough people scream.

It's one more wrinkle in the mangy Shar-Pei that is ObamaCare.

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