Michigan: Hey, look at that: Medicaid expansion INCREASES employment WITHOUT work requirements!

For nearly three years now, the Trump Administration and Republican politicians across dozens of states have been claiming that expanding Medicaid to "able-bodied adults" encourages them to be lazy couch potatoes, lying around on their butts just soaking up all that sweet, sweet free healthcare coverage. That's the main excuse they've used to tack on draconian work requirements for Medicaid expansion enrollees: Supposedly doing so goads them into getting off their rumps, pulling themselves up by their bootstraps and becoming a Productive Member of Society, etc etc.

Of course, the reality is that most Medicaid expansion enrollees already work, and of those who don't most are already either in school, caring for a child or a medically frail relative, etc etc...meaning that work requirements impose a mountain of burdensome paperwork and reporting requirements in order to "catch" a tiny handful of people who supposedly match the "lazy bum" stereotype...but instead end up kicking thousands of people who are working/in school/etc. off of their coverage because they aren't able to keep up with the reporting requirements.

Well, guess what (via Harris Meyer of Modern Healthcare)?

Medicaid expansion linked to employment rate growth in Michigan

Medicaid expansion enrollees in Michigan increased their rate of employment or student status at a significantly higher rate than the rest of the state's population in 2017, the latest evidence on the benefits of expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

The percentage of expansion enrollees who had jobs or were enrolled in school rose six percentage points in one year, while the rate for other state residents remained flat, according to a new study published in JAMA Network Open.

The survey, conducted by University of Michigan researchers, found that 60% of expansion enrollees were employed or students in 2017, compared with 54% in 2016. Non-Hispanic black enrollees and people whose incomes were less than one-third of the federal poverty level had even larger increases in employment or student status—11 and 9 percentage points, respectively.

The sad irony of this is that this report (which refers to 2017, when Michigan didn't have work requirements) was released immediately after Medicaid work requirements were implemented last month.

Prediction: Tens of thousands of people who do work will lose their coverage, while imposing the requirements won't do a damned thing to increase employment of the rest.