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Insuring the survival of rural health care in Montana is imperative. Steve Bullock and Mike Cooney secured Medicaid expansion to 90,000 Montanans and insured the survival of rural hospitals.

As a result, nearly 1 in 10 Montanans has insurance through the health care expansion. This is good for Montana’s economy and jobs. The Bureau of Business and Economic Impact (2019) reports the expansion has resulted in a “decrease in crime, improved health, lower debt and the creation of a robust healthcare sector.”

It has reduced medical debt and prevented 50,000 bankruptcies for Montana citizens. For every person with health insurance, the security of having coverage reduces stress and eases decisions to seek and manage an illness or long-term disease. In contrast, Gianforte has voted to abolish the ACA which funds the Medicaid expansion for 10% of Montanans. He says he wants to preserve “access,” but so far he’s only voted to undo the progress made with Medicaid expansion.

By voting for Bullock and Cooney, we can ensure access to health care and protect our rural hospitals with leaders who are committed to strengthening health care, versus gutting it for all but the wealthiest.

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Laurie McKinney