WATCH PRESS CONFERENCE: Governor Kemp, Legislative Republicans Block Medicaid Expansion, Push Failed Pathways Program

March 28, 2024

This morning, Georgia Democrats laid blame on Governor Brian Kemp and Republican leadership in the Legislature for once again blocking full Medicaid expansion this session to protect Kemp’s failed Pathways program. Republican obstructionism threatens to leave billions of dollars in federal funding on the table and hundreds of thousands of Georgians uninsured. 

The call’s speakers—Senate Democratic Leader Gloria Butler, House Democratic Leader James Beverly, House Democratic Whip Sam Park, and Representative Dr. Michelle Au—identified Republican support for Gov. Brian Kemp’s failed “Pathways to Coverage” program as the primary reason Medicaid expansion has not passed this legislative session. In nine months of operation, Pathways has enrolled fewer than 3,500 Georgians while costing taxpayers $26 million—90% of which has gone to consultants and administrative costs rather than health care for Georgians who need it.

“Georgia’s healthcare policy failures are deliberate choices made by Governor Kemp and the Republican leadership in the Legislature,” said Leader Gloria Butler (4:20 mark of video). “We were told to ‘let them cook.’ We were told that if we were nice to Republicans and we asked politely, Medicaid expansion would be on the table. … And yet, here we are.”

After giving a rundown of the troubling facts and various healthcare categories in which Georgia ranked in the bottom ten nationally, Leader James Beverly (9:32 mark) concluded his remarks with: “We have one day left. They could easily, easily expand Medicaid. But, at this particular point, we’ll see.”

“A real solution is certainly not Governor Kemp’s failed Pathways to Coverage program,” said House Democratic Whip Sam Park (10:26 mark). “On every key metric — cost, efficiency, number of Georgians covered, accessibility, and eligibility — Pathways performs significantly worse than full Medicaid expansion.”

“Georgia Republicans have denied patients the care and protection that they deserve,” said Representative Dr. Michelle Au (14:41 mark). “As a practicing physician and as a lawmaker, I cannot fathom the degree of moral cowardice and political self-interest that continues to drive Republicans away from doing what is right.”

Link to video; Passcode: 8bAKTp+@

Other News from DPG

Questions? Tips? Call anytime.

Georgia Voter Protection Line


Democratic Party of Georgia

Help us elect Democrats in Georgia.