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Illinois faces uncertain future in light of Obamacare repeal

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ILLINOIS NEWS NETWORK
Contributions West Suburban Journal

SPRINGFIELD | Repealing and replacing Obamacare isn’t a political discussion for the state of Illinois. It’s a budget discussion.

Simply put, Illinois needs Obamacare’s Medicaid money. Despite warnings from Republicans, the state added over 600,000 able-bodied men to Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. The federal government pays for almost allof their care. That was about $2 billion last year.

State Representative, Emanuel Chris Welch, D-Hillside, said of the repeal, “Repealing of the Affordable Care Act would be devastating on the State of Illinois.  Millions of people will lose healthcare and jobs that resulted from this law championed by President Obama.  This would be the ultimate one-two punch to the gut by Rauner and Trump.”

State Sen. Dave Syverson, R-Rockford, said Illinois doesn’t have $2 billion more for Medicaid. “If the federal government cuts the amount that they’re paying for Medicaid to the states, that’d be a much bigger disaster to states like Illinois because we have such a large Medicaid population,” Syverson said.

Repealing and replacing Obamacare puts a huge question mark over Illinois’ Medicaid reimbursements. State Rep. Tom Demmer, R-Rochelle, said Illinois is likely going to face some difficult choices in whatever comes after Obamacare. “It’s going to be up to states, as we walk through repeal and replace, to decide… what can states afford to do. And what can they not afford to do,” Demmer said.

Republicans in Congress are still quiet about what an Obamacare replacement will look like.

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