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Rick Perry signing something official with his tongue sticking out.
Not so bright: Republican governors are protesting what they call a federal takeover of health care by forcing the federal government to take over their state health insurance markets
Add Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Maine Gov. Paul LePage, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to the list of Republican governors who are continuing to protest Obamacare by refusing to establish health insurance exchanges, in the process forcing the federal government to step in and create the exchanges itself.

Starting in Oct. 2013, the exchanges will be the marketplace for individuals to obtain insurance if they do not have coverage through their employer, Medicare, or Medicaid. Beginning Jan. 2014, the new insurance plans will take effect, giving nearly every American citizen health care coverage.

Under Obamacare, if a state does not establish a health insurance exchange, the federal government must do it for them. Therefore, while ostensibly a protest against the expansion of federal power, these governors are actually forcing the federal government to expand the scope of its operations.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker defended his position by saying that over 90 percent of his state already has health insurance.

In Wisconsin, we have been successful in providing health insurance coverage to over 90 percent of state residents without the creation of an exchange and absent federal regulation.
Under Obamacare, the remaining 10 percent of Walker's state will be able to obtain health insurance—but thanks to Walker's political gamesmanship, it won't be with the help of the state.

Other states that are forcing the federal government to run their health care exchange include Alabama, Alaska, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska and South Carolina. The original deadline for states to declare their intention was today, but yesterday the Department of Health and Human Services extended the deadline one month to give states more time to make a final decision. The request for an extended deadline came from the Republican Governors Association. Among the states yet to announce their plans: Arizona, Idaho, Pennsylvania and Oklahoma.

Originally posted to The Jed Report on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 10:29 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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