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Shifting Tone, Sununu Says Medicaid Expansion Yields "Great Results"

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Gov. Chris Sununu says New Hampshire's expanded Medicaid program has been a success. That conclusion is a shift from his prior statements about the program, which has provided health insurance to more than 50,000 Granite Staters.

Previously, Sununu was ambiguous about expanded Medicaid, raising concerns about long-term costs but also not supporting an outright repeal.

But speaking on NHPR's The Exchange Monday, he said the program had yielded, quote, "great results."

"There's no doubt it's been helpful," Sununu said. "It was a price tag of somewhere between $400 and $500 million. We've been able to do it to date without a single New Hampshire taxpayer dollar. No state taxes go into it."

State lawmakers expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act in 2015.

Sununu says he'd support the federal government turning Medicaid into a block grant program, a goal shared by many congressional Republicans. Block grants give states more flexibility in how they spend federal dollars, but there's the chance that the grants would not keep up with rising costs of the program.

Before joining NHPR in August 2014, Jack was a freelance writer and radio reporter. His work aired on NPR, BBC, Marketplace and 99% Invisible, and he wrote for the Christian Science Monitor and Northern Woodlands.
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