By ANDREW DeMILLO
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The Arkansas Senate has approved a plan to preserve the state's hybrid Medicaid expansion, backing an unusual tactic that required supporters to initially vote to end the subsidized health coverage.
Senators on Wednesday voted 27-2 with five voting present to approve a Medicaid budget bill that includes a provision ending the program, which uses federal funds to purchase private insurance for the poor, on Dec. 31. The bill needed at least 27 votes to advance to the House.
Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson has promised to veto the defunding provision and he's expected to have more than enough votes to uphold the veto. Hutchinson and legislative leaders pushed for the line-item veto plan after the Medicaid budget bill with the expansion funding fell short of the three-fourths votes needed in the Senate.