Former UM chancellor: Gov. Tate Reeves privately acknowledged Medicaid expansion benefits

Mississippi Today

Former University of Mississippi Chancellor Dan Jones said that Gov. Tate Reeves once told him in a meeting that he understood how Medicaid expansion would benefit the state but couldn’t agree to champion it for political reasons. Jones, who led the state’s largest hospital, the University of Mississippi Medical Center, before he served as chancellor from 2009-2015, divulged details of the 2013 or 2014 meeting during a Thursday press conference with Democratic legislative leaders about the Republican leadership’s inaction on addressing the state’s hospital crisis. “A little while after I began explaining the benefits of Medicaid expansion, he (Reeves) put his hand up and said, ‘Chancellor, I recognize it would be good for Mississippians, good for our economy, good for health care if we expanded Medicaid,’” Jones recalled. “I had a big smile on my face and said, ‘I’m so glad to hear you’re going to support expansion.’ His response, ‘Oh no, I’m not going to support it because it’s not in my personal political interest.’”

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