AUGUSTA, Maine - The Maine Senate has rejected the latest effort to expand Medicaid coverage to roughly 70,000 more Mainers.
The Republican-controlled voted 18-17 against the bill on Tuesday. The bill will now likely die.
Republican Gov. Paul LePage has consistently vetoed Medicaid expansion proposals that lawmakers have sent to his desk. He and Republican lawmakers say it would be too costly and that Maine needs to ensure that most needs of the elderly and disabled are first.
Democrats say that Maine is leaving more than $1 billion in federal funds on the table by rejecting the expansion. They say that providing more residents with coverage will ensure they get the preventative care they need to prevent more costly medical procedures down the line.