Supporters Of Medicaid Expansion To Turn In Petition Signatures


Wednesday, October 23rd 2019, 5:14 pm
By: Dana Hertneky


Supporters of expanding Medicaid have been collecting signatures for about three months, to put the issue up to a public vote. Thursday, they will hand those petitions over to the Secretary of State. 

At 11 a.m. Thursday, October 24 as many as 100 volunteers will deliver those petitions to the Secretary of State. Campaign organizers said they have well beyond the 178,000 signatures necessary to put the issue on the ballot.

Read Related Story: Group Collecting Signatures For Medicaid Expansion Petition

Last minute petitions are still coming into the “YES on 802” campaign offices Wednesday, even though organizers said they won't need them.

“We feel really good that we are going to blow past that 178,000 number and we might even come close to breaking a record tomorrow,” said Campaign Manager Amber England.

If the issue passes all the legal challenges, the governor will decide when it will go on the ballot.

Exclusive News 9 SoonerPoll results show 56% of those polled support Medicaid expansion, including about 40% of Republicans.

“Everyone in this state knows someone who needs access to healthcare. If you’re living in rural Oklahoma, you’ve probably been impacted by one of the six rural hospitals that have closed or one of the eight hospitals that have declared bankruptcy,” said England.

Opponents of expansion, however, said it would be a massive expansion of welfare for able bodied adults that will take taxpayers money from other important services.

But England argues the public will now be able to make that decision.

“It’s time, we’ve waited over a decade for lawmakers to take action on this issue. They’ve kicked the can down the road year after year, after year and it’s time for Oklahomans to decide this issue,” said England.

England said if the issue passes, about 200,000 Oklahomans would start getting healthcare July 1st the following year. 

 

","published":"2019-10-23T22:14:05.000Z","updated":"2019-10-24T13:10:16.000Z","summary":"Supporters of expanding Medicaid have been collecting signatures for about three months, to put the issue up to a public vote. Thursday, they will hand those petitions over to the Secretary of State. At 11 a.m. Thursday, October 24 as many as 100 voluntee","affiliate":{"_id":"5cc353fe1c9d440000d3b70f","callSign":"kwtv","origin":"https://www.news9.com"},"contentClass":"news","createdAt":"2020-01-31T18:15:01.608Z","updatedAt":"2020-03-31T17:17:46.545Z","__v":1,"show":true,"link":"/story/5e346ea5527dcf49dad6e2cb/supporters-of-medicaid-expansion-to-turn-in-petition-signatures","hasSchedule":false,"id":"5e346ea5527dcf49dad6e2cb"};