JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMOV.com/AP) -- Missouri became the 38th state to approve expanding Medicaid health care coverage for low income adults.
Amendment 2 narrowly passed overnight.
Democratic candidate for Missouri governor Nicole Galloway had strongly supported Medicaid expansion while Governor Mike Parson opposed the measure.
Parson told News 4 that despite his feelings on the amendment, the people of Missouri voted for it so he’s going to make it happen.
"I mean there's no new money out there. Right now we've gotta build the economy back out. But the reality of it is that's what the people decided they want so you're going to have to figure out what the priorities are and how you make that happen,” Parson said. “However, Amendment 2 is now a part of Missouri’s Constitution, and we will find a way to move forward.”
Galloway is making the case that she’d be better at implementing the program.
“We can expand health care without raising taxes or cutting other programs,” Galloway said in a speech after winning the Democratic nomination. “As governor, that’s exactly what I’ll do. Gov. Parson won't, so it matters who is sitting in the governor's office next year when it comes time to implement Medicaid expansion."
The financial impact is uncertain, but it could cost the state at least $200 million or save as much as $1 billion annually by 2026, according to estimates from Galloway’s office. The auditor’s office is required to provide financial estimates for ballot measures.