Judge’s Meddling in Kentucky Medicaid Causes Benefit Cuts

Before federal Judge James Boasberg vacated Kentucky HEALTH, a Medicaid demonstration project approved by HHS in January and due to be launched on July 1, he should have taken the time to learn about its benefits. State officials tried to tell him that non-medical vision and dental coverage were available only through that project, and that these benefits would have to be cut if he struck it down. But the Obama-appointed judicial hack was so intent on killing its “community engagement” provision that nearly half a million Kentucky residents became collateral damage in the Democratic war against work. AP reports:

Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration cut dental and vision coverage for as many as 460,000 Kentuckians after his Medicaid overhaul plan was rejected in court. The state Cabinet for Health and Family Services called the cuts an “unfortunate consequence” of Friday’s ruling by a federal judge.

Predictably, when state officials notified the enrollees of this inevitable result of Judge Boasberg’s ruling, Kentucky Democrats and their media enablers began claiming that it was cruel retaliation by Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration for its legal defeat. This is a transparent lie, of course, but prevarication is what Democrats and “news” media do. Never mind that Adam Meier, the state’s secretary of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, issued an unambiguous warning in advance of Judge Boasberg’s ruling that, without implementation of Kentucky HEALTH, the state would have to make these very benefit reductions:

Probably right away dental and vision would be removed from the low income adult group, likely pharmacy as well… Kentucky HEALTH is our plan, is our way of maintaining expansion, maintaining coverage and maintaining access, so without having the waiver approved, we lose our ability to do that effectively.

Hilariously, the Democrats are questioning the legality of the cuts. Despite being told that non-medical vision and dental coverage were available only through the Kentucky HEALTH demonstration project, they now claim it’s illegal to stop these benefits even after a federal Judge has vacated that project. WAVE 3 News reports, “Kentucky Democrats said they believe the loss of dental and vision coverage will have to be decided by the courts again, similar to the work requirement waiver.” These clowns still don’t get that the lost benefits were inextricably tied to the work requirement program they just killed.

David Catron
David Catron
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David Catron is a health care consultant and frequent contributor to The American Spectator. You can follow him on Twitter at @Catronicus.
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