Maine goes back to drawing board on Medicaid expansion

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Despite Maine residents voting to expand Medicaid expansion, they'll have to wait longer after the state House failed to override the governor's veto.

Republican Gov. Paul LePage vetoed the bill to expand Medicaid most recently at the end of June. While lawmakers voted 85-58 Monday to overturn the block, it fell short of two-thirds majority needed to pass.

Under the vetoed bill, Maine would have shelled out $60 million, scheduled to come from the state's tobacco settlement fund and budget surplus revenue, which would be matched by $500 million in federal funds, according to local reports.

But LePage and his supporters say that's not a good enough plan for long-term sustainability of Medicaid.

The state's Supreme Judicial Court is expected to hear arguments next week from plaintiffs who want to force the governor to file an expansion plan. The administration says it cannot implement the law without funding approved through the Legislature.

The governor, who has vetoed Medicaid expansion six times, will leave office when his term ends in January.