The failure of the congressional super committee to reach a budget accord means that the budget ax will fall across many domestic spending programs and defense spending in the next fiscal year, including a number of programs that help the poor. Senior Fellow Ron Haskins says that while the automatic budget cuts will do some harm to some anti-poverty programs, the largest and most important programs – including Medicaid and Social Security – have been largely shielded.
It’s the biggest expansion of Medicaid in a long time, and the biggest ever in terms of adults covered. Although the federal government is on the hook for most of the cost, Medicaid on the whole is one of the biggest items in state budgets and the fastest growing. So there are some understandable concerns about the financial implications and how implementation would work.