Next year, with the feds still picking up 95 percent of the tab, New Mexico’s share of Medicaid expansion jumps dramatically to about $120 million. Over the five-year period from now until 2021 just the expansion cost of Medicaid (10 percent of which will soon be paid by New Mexico) will cost State taxpayers $778 million. That is money that we simply don’t have – and are not likely to have, barring a miraculous economic turnaround.
Tellingly, in Gov. Martinez’ latest budget proposal, Medicaid was among a tiny handful of spending areas that include a significant increase. Schools, roads, courts, prisons, economic development, and just about every other priority our state might have will soon face the money-devouring maw known as Medicaid. Without decisive the welfare program will quickly devour the budget.Lujan Grisham apparently doesn’t care if Medicaid destroys New Mexico so long as ever-larger numbers of its citizens receive this government program. But President Trump is not as enthusiastic about Obamacare or its expansion of Medicaid. He and Congress will likely address problems with the entire law, possibly in the form of Medicaid “block grants.”