By: Rob Kidney
Tuesday’s election delivered big gains for both parties at the state level. Democrats won governorships in six states (Washington is still too close to call, but appears to favor Democrat Jay Inslee) while Republicans picked up four and legislatures in nine states switched party control.
Voters in five states considered measures related to the Affordable Care Act. The majority of the ballot measures addressed the requirement to purchase health insurance while Missouri voters approved a measure prohibiting the state from establishing a health insurance exchange.
With the election behind us, policymakers are now shifting gears to focus on the 2013 legislative session. With massive budget gaps still looming across the country and key pieces of the Affordable Care Act slated to take effect in the next year, legislative agendas will be packed. The upcoming session will be crucial as governors and legislators decide whether or not to take up the now-optional Medicaid expansion and take further steps to set up health insurance exchanges, both of which will bring millions of Americans into the health care system and into health centers. Educating new legislators about health centers and our patients will be a key priority in the months leading up to start of the new session. Check back soon for additional tools and resources!