LePage wrongly blames Medicaid expansion for Maine’s worker shortage


After Medicaid expansion won at the ballot box in 2017, LePage still refused to file for expansion with the federal government, prompting a lawsuit led by the anti-poverty advocacy group Maine Equal Justice.

However, on the radio show last week, LePage did not say he would attempt to cut men under 30 off of MaineCare. Rather, he said he would try to grant ACA health plans to those people near MaineCare’s income eligibility cutoff who would lose coverage if they take a higher paying job.

James Myall, a policy analyst with the Maine Center for Economic Policy (MECEP), pointed out that this already happens.

“He says MaineCare’s income limits discourage people from working. In reality, once you earn too much for MaineCare, you can transition to the ACA marketplace for minimal or no monthly premiums,” Myall tweeted. “What’s more, LePage previously proposed making MaineCare income limits lower!”

Myall added that LePage was also grossly exaggerating the number of men under 30 on MaineCare.

“LePage blames MaineCare expansion for the labor shortage. (Never mind that state unemployment fell to record lows after expansion was enacted),” Myall said. “[He] claims there are ‘55,000 men under the age of 30’ on expanded MaineCare. It’s actually 15,000.”

Click here to read the full story, first published June 16, 2022 in Beacon.