North Dakotans should be uncomfortable with Dalrymple’s Medicaid expansion

North Dakotans should be uncomfortable with the proposed expansion of Medicaid.

The federal government offers between $100 million and $150 million during the 2013-15 biennium to insure 20,000 to 30,000 additional residents, mostly adults. It would cost the state more than $300,000 to administer the program.

While North Dakota can afford its share, the federal government already has a nearly $17 trillion debt and can ill afford to add to it. Further, this is within the context of a vigorous North Dakota economy with as close to full employment as is possible, less than 3 percent unemployed.

What percentage of North Dakotans ought to be dependent on government for health insurance? Presently, 66,322 North Dakotans are enrolled in Medicaid, or about 9 percent of the state’s population. Add covering 20,000 adults to that number, and the percentage enrolled in Medicaid rises to 12 percent of the population.

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters. He writes a weekly column for several North Dakota newspapers, and also serves as a policy fellow for the North Dakota Policy Council.

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