New Mexico Will Participate in Medicaid Expansion

Republican governor only second GOP leader to support


A second Republican governor has agreed to carry out an expansion of Medicaid under President Barack Obama's health care reform law. New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez announced her plans Tuesday.

Martinez and Nevada's Gov. Brian Sandoval are the only Republican governors to date to support broadening Medicaid eligibility to anyone earning up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level, which was $14,856 last year. In contrast, 10 other Republican governors have gone on record opposing a Medicaid expansion.

Jointly financed and managed by the federal and state governments, Medicaid is one of the pillars of Obama's health care law, which would enroll as many as 17 million people in the program by 2022 if every state agreed to the Obamacare expansion. A Supreme Court ruling that made that expansion optional, however, threatens to shorten the reach of the health care law and leave 3 million people without health coverage, according to a Congressional Budget Office estimate.