February 20

Petitions turned in urging Maine to expand Medicaid

More than 70,000 signatures were collected by the Maine People’s Alliance and two national organizations.

The Associated Press

AUGUSTA – The Maine People’s Alliance has delivered more than 7,000 petitions and hundreds of postcards and personal messages urging the state to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

The petitions collected by MPA and two national organizations were delivered Thursday as lawmakers debate whether to expand Medicaid in the face of a promised veto by Republican Gov. Paul LePage.

Two Mainers who would gain access to health care coverage under an expansion spoke at the event. One of them was Patty Kidder of Springvale, whose family recently lost their MaineCare coverage. She says she can’t renew her husband’s medications because first she must see a doctor.

The Democratic-controlled Legislature already voted to expand Medicaid last year, but the measure was vetoed by LePage. LePage contends it would be costly.

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