Today is day 50 of Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Obamacare budget impasse.
“If that’s what it takes, so be it.”
That’s what one of Governor McAuliffe’s top lieutenants, Democratic State Senator Don McEachin, said about the prospect of failing to pass the state budget by June 30 and, in turn, shutting down state government.
Despite the public’s solid opposition to Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion and overwhelming desire to see a compromise that avoids a government shutdown, Governor Terry McAuliffe and his allies in the State Senate are ready to go the brink, even if that means an unprecedented state government shutdown:
If necessary, Senate Democrats pushing for the expansion of Medicaid are prepared to prolong resolution of a new, two-year state budget beyond June 30, the end of the fiscal year.
“I am prepared to do whatever it takes to make sure we leave no Virginian behind when it comes to health care,” said Sen. A. Donald McEachin, D-Henrico, the chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus.
Failure to reach a budget deal by the end of the fiscal year could put the state’s fiscal future in uncharted waters, lacking the legislative authorization or direction to spend the revenue it collects.
“If that means we have to go past June 30, then so be it,” he said. “I hope it doesn’t come to that, but if that’s what it takes, so be it.”
The entire situation is wholly unnecessary. Even Democrats admit that without Medicaid expansion, the state budget could be finished in short order.
The people of Virginia overwhelmingly favor a compromise to avoid a state government shutdown. The clear compromise is to pass a clean budget to keep state government open and debate Medicaid expansion later.