Democrat seeks debate on Medicaid expansion in Kansas Senate

April 6, 2019

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Senate’s top Democrat is trying to force the chamber to debate Medicaid expansion.

Minority Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka notified the Senate on Friday that he will try to pull a Medicaid expansion bill out of committee.

Hensley made the move just before lawmakers adjourned for an annual spring break. Senators will vote on the matter when lawmakers reconvene May 1.

Hensley will need 24 of 40 votes to succeed.

The bill contains a modified version of Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s proposal to expand state Medicaid health coverage to as many as 150,000 more people. The House approved it last month.

Top Senate Republicans oppose Medicaid expansion and argue that it will prove too expensive even with the federal government’s promise to cover most of the cost.