Kansas expansion foes signal nervousness with Medicaid move

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Top Republican lawmakers in Kansas appear skittish about being able to block Medicaid expansion.

They offered political cover Tuesday to moderate GOP colleagues if they back off their push for an expansion this year.

State Senate President Susan Wagle told reporters that GOP leaders plan to have a legislative committee study Medicaid expansion this summer and fall.

She said the panel would review proposals that could generate broader support among Republicans. The ideas include a work requirement or drug testing for people receiving the expanded coverage.

Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly has made expanding Medicaid health coverage for as many as 150,000 additional Kansas residents a top priority after her Republican predecessors thwarted it. Expansion has bipartisan support, but its foes hold key positions in the GOP-controlled Legislature.

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