Hundreds at state capitol grounds to rally against Medicaid expansion

Posted at 7:14 PM, Aug 19, 2013
and last updated 2013-08-19 19:14:12-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)--Hundreds attended a rally downtown Monday, speaking against the expansion of Medicaid. It was held by the Virginia group of Americans For Prosperity.

Monday marked the second meeting of the Medicaid Innovation and Reform Commission at the General Assembly building to discuss the possible expansion here in Virginia.

Supporters and dissenters alike were in attendance. Virginia Organizing, a group in favor of Medicaid Expansion was on hand to let lawmakers know they believe joining the expansion would allow nearly $400,000 Virginians to have health insurance.

"Today, probably for the first time, I heard some really intelligent questions from the delegates side," said Ray Scher.  "I think they understand how much Virginia could benefit from this, I hope they're hearing from their constituents."

Those against the expansion say it would cost too much money, not benefit those without insurance and ultimately the state would not see any benefits from the federal government.

"I want it completely abolished, any federal intervention or government intervention in health care, absolutely. I think if I have a health problem, I need to pay for or the people around me, my family, church family, community pay for it. Not the government. Because the government obviously turns into a bloated bureaucracy," said Josh Barnhart.

Both sides say they will be back at the Capitol in January, when the General Assembly goes into session.

Click on the video for Wayne Covil's full report.