Ramsey: Bill banning Medicaid growth on hold

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey says fellow Republican Sen. Brian Kelsey has agreed to delay consideration of a bill seeking to ban the state from participating in Medicaid expansion under the federal health care overhaul.

Ramsey said at a legislative preview session hosted by The Associated Press and the Tennessee Press Association on Thursday that Kelsey agreed to take his bill off notice to give the governor more time to consider an expansion.

Kelsey, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said in an earlier panel discussion that he doesn't believe the federal government will keep its word on funding no less than 90 percent of the added costs.

But Gordon Bonnyman, executive director of the Tennessee Justice Center, stressed that Tennessee could withdraw from the expanded Medicaid program at any time.


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