Yesterday, President Biden traveled to Florida to highlight the administration’s work to lower costs and strengthen health care for seniors. During the event, President Biden called out Governor Ron DeSantis for his failure to expand Medicaid to more than a million hardworking Floridians. President Biden made clear that Republicans’ war on Medicaid has only hurt Floridians and residents of 10 other states that have refused expansion.
Research shows that Medicaid expansion reduces inequities in health care, strengthens state economies, prevents hospital closures, and saves lives. Importantly, expansion helps reduce racial disparities in health coverage, with the gap between uninsured rates in Black and white Americans decreased by 51 percent in states that expanded Medicaid coverage. Yet Republicans are committed to putting politics over real people and are not only refusing expansion, but are threatening to cut Medicaid along with Social Security and Medicare.
Florida Phoenix: In The Sunshine State, Biden Makes The Case For Medicaid Expansion; Protects Social Security. “President Joe Biden appeared in Florida on Thursday before an intimate crowd at the University of Tampa, where he pledged to protect Social Security and Medicare and push for Medicaid expansion for vulnerable families. The president also drew a contrast with U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, a Republican from Florida and the architect of a plan that would sunset all federal legislation – including Social Security and Medicare every five years and requiring Congress to approve those programs again.” [Florida Phoenix, 2/9/23]
The Washington Post: Biden Targets Top Florida Republicans DeSantis, Scott Over Health Care In Tampa Stop. “Biden knocked DeSantis for refusing to expand subsidized health care with the help of the federal government and continued to attack Scott for a plan that would require Congress to reauthorize Social Security and Medicare every five years… Biden’s targeting of both DeSantis and Scott is no coincidence. The two are already beginning to draw national attention ahead of the upcoming election year in which DeSantis — fresh off a 19-point reelection victory in Florida last year — is widely expected to run for the GOP presidential nomination.” [The Washington Post, 2/9/23]
Bloomberg: Biden Assails DeSantis Over Health Benefits In Visit To Florida. “The visit to Florida is the latest effort by Biden to put Republicans on the back foot over proposals by some members of their caucus to cut or alter Medicare and Social Security programs as part of a push to slash federal spending — and to lay the groundwork for an expected reelection campaign. A 2024 run could pit Biden against DeSantis, who is widely expected to challenge former President Donald Trump for the GOP nomination… Proposed cuts to the programs are deeply unpopular — especially among seniors who are historically the demographic most likely to turn out during an election. Just 17% of Americans said they supported reducing spending on the program in an Economist/YouGov poll earlier this year, while seven in 10 Americans said they opposed any such move.” [Bloomberg, 2/9/23]
MarketWatch: Biden Criticizes DeSantis Over His Medicaid Stance While In Florida. “President Joe Biden on Thursday criticized a potential opponent in the 2024 White House race, going after Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida while delivering a speech in Tampa. The president noted that Florida is among 11 states that have opted against expansions for Medicaid, the health-insurance program for the poor, that would be 90% funded by the federal government.” [MarketWatch, 2/10/23]
Politico: Biden’s Potential Lifeline For Florida Democrats. “During his short speech at the University of Tampa on Thursday, Biden touched on the tense exchange he had with Republicans on the House floor during his State of the Union address over cutting Medicare and Social Security, bringing up Sen. Rick Scott’s proposal to sunset the two programs in five years. Biden showed the pamphlet and read from it during the speech. “I reminded them that Florida’s own Rick Scott is the guy who ran the Senate campaign committee for Republicans last year,” Biden said. “Had a plan to sunset, maybe he changed his mind, maybe he’s seen the Lord, but he wanted to sunset, meaning if you don’t reauthorize it, it goes away. Sunset social security and Medicare every five years.”” [Politico, 2/9/23]