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Medicaid backers abandon petition effort in Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Supporters of extending Medicaid have abandoned an effort that could have put the issue before Ohio voters, because they say two actions by state officials made expansion a reality.

Two key players with the Healthy Ohioans Work coalition said Monday they have withdrawn their initiated statute petition. Jon Allison and Sean McGlone filed the paperwork Dec. 4.

The group of health advocates, labor groups and others were collecting signatures to force the Legislature to act on extending coverage. Under their petition, if lawmakers passed, amended or took no action, then they could have sought to get the issue on 2014 ballots.

The move to drop the petition comes after the state's Medicaid department acted to extend Medicaid coverage and a legislative board approved federal funds to cover the additional people.

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