AL Democrats Fail to Expand Medicaid

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Democrats in the Alabama Legislature failed to achieve their top goal for the 2013 session.

When the session began in February, Democratic legislators said their No. 1 goal was expanding Alabama's Medicaid program under the federal Affordable Care Act. But they conceded on the session's last day Monday that their goal had failed.

A bill to expand the program drew opposition from Gov. Robert Bentley and never went anywhere.

The leader of the Senate Democratic Caucus, Vivian Davis Figures of Mobile, said an expansion could have provided health care to 300,000 Alabamians. She said the failure to expand Medicaid and the passage of the Alabama Accountability Act made this the worst legislative session she can remember.

The governor said Saturday he still believes the state can't afford to expand Medicaid.

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