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lature did not move not move forward on closing that gap. But he said he did not totally agree with the evidence that Idahoans are dying because they aren’t eligible for health care coverage.
“I see plenty of people that die every day in hospitals and they have insurance,” Otter said. “And they’re in the hospital. But they still die.”
Dumb remark? Yes. But Otter was simply riffing on a theme put forth in the closing hours of the session after Republican majority leadership led a tidal wave of
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Idaho’s 2016 Legislature was noteworthy both for what it did and for what it did not do. But the most egregious failure was in not passing true “no-brainer” legislation endorsed by nearly every health care and social justice advocacy organization (including TransForm Idaho) to close the state’s Medicaid gap, and in so doing, continued to deny health insurance to 78,000 Idahoans.
The most cynical official post-session assessment of that failure came from Gov. Butch Otter himself, who said he was disappointed the Legis-
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