JLF’s Mitch Kokai talked with Richard Craver of the Winston-Salem Journal about North Carolina’s appetite — or lack thereof — for expanding Medicaid. Maine voters recently did so via referendum.

Mitch Kokai, policy analyst with Libertarian think tank John Locke Foundation, said he doubts the Maine expansion referendum results “will have any impact on North Carolina’s Medicaid debate. State legislative leaders remain unconvinced expansion would do more good than harm.”

North Carolina legislators have good reason not to expand Medicaid, as JLF’s Katherine Restrepo explains.

 A behemoth of a program, Medicaid covers 70 million people nationwide, costing state and federal taxpayers more than half a trillion dollars. In North Carolina alone, one in five people is eligible. Medicaid is a critical safety net. However, numerous studies, including multiple published by MIT economists, indicate that the program’s value it brings to patients doesn’t add up to its nominal price tag.