SPRINGFIELD - AARP is heavily lobbying for Illinois to plunge headfirst into Obamacare, even ahead of the rest of the nation, but opening the way for all low-income adults to receive federally-paid health care. Why would AARP want that? Because it's the way to relieve state funds. Only thing is when the feds pay for everything, the state programs have to succumb to federal requirements.
The Illinois Policy Institute's Jonathan Ingram gave three reasons why SB 26 is not good for Illinois:
First, Illinois is under no obligation to expand Medicaid eligibility. Federal law permits, but does not require, states to expand eligibility levels for Medicaid. To date, few states have enacted legislation to implement this expansion. Across the nation, Democratic and Republican state lawmakers are taking a very cautious approach and are not rushing into this decision. I recommend you do the same.
Second, many of the people this bill makes eligible for Medicaid are currently eligible to receive federal subsidies to buy private health insurance. This bill would make those individuals ineligible for federal subsidies, forcing them into Medicaid instead. Many more currently have private coverage, but could be forced to join Medicaid under the exchange’s automatic enrollment procedures.
Third, the federal government has already tried shifting more Medicaid costs to the states. President Barack Obama’s last two budgets have proposed shifting more of these costs to the state, and this shift was part of the debt ceiling and fiscal cliff negotiations.
Below the fold is AARP's graphic advocating for Illinois' to give up Medicaid state control with the passage of SB 26.