Of 29 studies that looked at the economic impact of Medicaid, the joint federal-state health care program for low-income Americans, percent that found Medicaid spending has a positive impact on state economies: 100

Rank of Medicaid among the largest sources of federal funds for states: 1

Amount Mississippi appropriated to Medicaid in fiscal year 2012: $819.3 million

Amount Mississippi drew down from the federal government for its program as a result: $2.4 billion

Amount that spending generated in salaries in Mississippi: $2.365 billion

Amount that spending added to Mississippi’s general fund: $156.6 million

Rank of Mississippi among the states that would see the largest influx of federal funding from the Medicaid expansion that’s part of the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. “Obamacare”: 1

Rank of Medicaid among the greatest economic development engines for Mississippi, according to a state representative who’s considered one of the legislature’s leading experts on the program: 1

Percent of Mississippi residents who live in poverty: 22.4

Rank of Mississippi among the states with the highest poverty rates: 1

Rank of Mississippi among the states with the highest unemployment rates: 8th

Current unemployment rate in Mississippi: 8.7

Amount Mississippi would be expected to receive between 2014 and 2019 under the Medicaid expansion: $9.8 billion

Percentage that amount represents of Mississippi’s yearly gross state product: 10

Date on which Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant (R) said he planned to resist Medicaid expansion in his state: 6/28/2012

Of the 19 states with rates of uninsured residents higher than the national average, number in the South (see accompanying chart; click for larger version): 9

Of those nine Southern states, number where the governors have said they are refusing or considering to refuse the Medicaid expansion: 7

(Click on figure to go to source. Map from the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. Chart from the paper “Give Me Liberty or at Least Your Votes: A Study of Governors’ Altruism on Health Care” by John Hudak with the Brookings Institution.)

Sue Sturgis

Sue Sturgis

Sue Sturgis joined the Institute for Southern Studies in November 2005 as director of the Institute's Gulf Coast Reconstruction Watch, a project to document and investigate the post-Katrina recovery. A former staff writer for the Raleigh News & Observer and Independent Weekly (Durham, N.C.), Sue directs and regularly contributes to the Institute's online magazine, Facing South, with a focus on energy and environmental issues. Sue is the author or co-author of five Institute reports, including Faith in the Gulf (Aug/Sept 2008), Hurricane Katrina and the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (January 2008) and Blueprint for Gulf Renewal (Aug/Sept 2007). Sue holds a Masters in Journalism from New York University.