RALEIGH (September 19, 2023) – The NC Justice Center firmly opposes Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore’s latest scheme to make Medicaid expansion contingent upon gambling expansion in North Carolina. In addition to legalizing casinos in rural areas, Berger and Moore’s proposal will make video gaming machines available in virtually every community in our state. As an antipoverty organization, we cannot endorse gambling which has been shown to increase poverty and deepen social inequality among our most vulnerable communities.
The backroom negotiations that led to this Medicaid expansion/casino proposal demonstrate a gross abuse of political power and a betrayal of how we expect our lawmakers to govern. Medicaid expansion cannot and should not be used as a bargaining chip for NCGA leadership to force a vote on gambling.