AUSTIN -- Today, State Senator José Rodríguez released the following statement in reaction to Governor Rick Perry's announcement that Texas will not expand Medicaid or create an insurance exchange in accordance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA):
"The Governor is once again putting politics above the needs of our state. Texas leads the nation in the number of uninsured adults and children and today's announcement is a slap in the face to those in need of health coverage, including nearly one-third of El Pasoans.
"As a result of this short-sighted decision, we will leave billions of Texas taxpayer dollars on the table -- money that will now be spent by other states who make the right choice to expand Medicaid. By denying this option without debate, Perry has closed the door for 1.5 million Texans who would be eligible under the Medicaid expansion.
"By rejecting a Texas-designed, Texas-run health insurance exchange, employers and individuals seeking insurance will have to rely on the 'one-size fits all' federal program to find coverage options. This is a mistake that we will pay the price for years to come. "