Mapping Obamacare grants: which states got what?

April 2, 2015

Politics makes for odd sickbed funding.

When Texas Senator Ted Cruz made his plans to run for president official, the announcement came with an awkward revelation: Cruz, who has made opposition to the law his signature, would have to enroll in Obamacare.

But Cruz isn’t the only GOP presidential hopeful to hold his nose and accept some filthy healthcare lucre. As this Reuters graphic shows, since 2010, Affordable Care Act (ACA) grants have doled out varying amounts to states, from less than $10 million to over $500 million. Some of those grants have gone to some surprising places: A Reuters exclusive from Andy Sullivan reveals that Governors Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Chris Christie of New Jersey, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and former Texas Governor Rick Perry collectively applied for and won at least $352 million in ACA grants.

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Reconciling the acceptance of these grants with some of the rhetoric that has come out of the tetrad of aspirants can be a perplexing exercise. Again from Reuters’ Sullivan: “Walker has called the law an ‘abysmal failure’ and Perry has blasted it as an ‘abomination.’ Christie called it a ‘failure’ and Jindal told a gathering of conservative activists in February that ‘we must repeal every single word of Obamacare.'”

To date, nearly 11.7 million Americans have signed-up for coverage under the ACA, healthily over the 9.1 million that the Obama administration predicted.

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