Ohio Governor John Kasich lied to yet another Fox News host yesterday, spinning the Obamacare Medicaid expansion as a conservative program for the drug-addicted and mentally ill that will not increase federal spending.
“On Obamacare, you declined setting up a state exchange, leaving that to the feds,” Chris Wallace told Kasich during a March 23 Fox News Sunday interview. “On the other hand, you have agreed to accept the money to expand Medicaid over the objections of the majority — Republican majority — in your state legislature.”
Wallace asked Kasich, “How do you explain those different actions?”
“Well, Chris, first of all, I don’t think it was over the objection of the majority of Republicans,” Kasich replied. “Had there been a vote, I think it would’ve passed.”
The Republican-led Ohio House stripped the Obamacare Medicaid expansion from the budget Gov. Kasich, a Republican, introduced last February. In place of the expansion, both the Ohio House and Ohio Senate approved language explicitly forbidding it.
Kasich expanded Medicaid unilaterally after issuing a line-item veto of the legislature’s ban.
The Obamacare expansion was funded only after Kasich told the quasi-legislative Ohio Controlling Board to appropriate the promised federal money, which the Kasich Administration warned was necessary to keep Ohio’s Medicaid program from going bankrupt.
“But I have a chance to bring back $14 billion in Ohio dollars back to Ohio, to do what? To strengthen our local communities as they treat the most significant problem of drug addiction and the problem of mental illness,” Kasich continued.
That Medicaid expansion will be paid for with “$14 billion in Ohio dollars” is a lie Gov. Kasich has been telling for more than a year, though it started as $13 billion last winter.
An estimated 90 percent of Ohioans eligible under Kasich’s Medicaid expansion are able-bodied childless adults. Their Medicaid benefits will be paid for with state and federal money that would not be spent if Ohio refused to enact the expansion.
“Now, I guess I could leave that money in Washington and leave it to those congressmen and senators to spend it wisely; unfortunately I was there for 18 years and I know what they do with that money,” Kasich continued. “I get it back to Ohio to solve some of the most vexing problems.”
Having lied twice about billions in taxpayer money, Kasich explained his big-government philosophy to Wallace.
“See, my philosophy is this, Chris: as the state does better and gets stronger economically, we must help people who live in the shadows,” Kasich said. “The people who have drug addiction — we have to get them rehab. The people who have mental illness. Those two groups of people should not be sitting in our jails and in our prisons, that’s unconscionable in our state.”
“And so, it’s a two-prong strategy: continue to grow the state, continue to make it stronger and stronger economically, and help to lift people outta the ditch where they are, bring them into the mainstream, and give them an opportunity to realize their God-given purpose,” Kasich added.
“I think it’s entirely consistent with conservative and Republican philosophy, and I’m really pleased we’re doing it because there are many people in Ohio now whose lives, frankly, will be in a position of being able to move forward.”
Wallace joins Laura Ingraham and Neil Cavuto on the list of Fox News hosts to whom John Kasich has lied about how the Obmacare Medicaid expansion will be paid for. Kasich has also lied about the Obamacare expansion during numerous public speeches and interviews with Ohio reporters.
To date, no member of Ohio’s legacy press has remarked on the fact that the governor has routinely misled Ohioans about a decision that will add hundreds of thousands of able-bodied childless adults to the Medicaid rolls at a cost of billions in new state and federal spending.