Morning must-read: Emails show Rick Scott knows his Medicaid numbers are wrong

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A must-read from Health News Florida.

Gov. Rick Scott says he opposes expanding Florida Medicaid because it would cost too much: $63 billion over 10 years, he says, with the state paying $26 billion of that.

But those numbers are based on a flawed report, state budget analysts say. A series of e-mails obtained by Health News Florida shows the analysts warned Scott’s office the numbers were wrong weeks ago, but he is still using them. He cited them in a Tampa Bay Times op-ed on Sunday and at at a Washington press conference on Monday (see YouTube video).

The flawed report, “Estimates Related to the Affordable Care Act,” was sent to members of the Legislative Budget Commission on Dec. 17. Three days later, two of the recipients pointed out the faulty assumptions and sent it back to AHCA for a do-over.  They said it would violate Florida law to proceed with the estimate.

But Michael Anway, Scott’s new coordinator for health policy and budget, sent an e-mail Friday to the others saying he will submit the original estimates  as an “alternative forecast” when the revised AHCA report comes before the next budget estimating conference.

Anway said he doesn’t believe the federal funds will come through. “The federal government has a $16 trillion national debt,  must borrow 46 cents of every dollar it spends, and in 2011 had its credit rating downgraded for the first time in history,” he wrote in explanation.

Continue reading here.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.