Utah GOP governor rejects full Medicaid expansion

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah's Republican governor has announced he wants to reject a full Medicaid expansion, and instead seek federal dollars to cover the poor.

Gov. Gary Herbert made the announcement Thursday afternoon, saying the state has an obligation to cover the poor by plugging a hole in the safety net.

The governor, who is one of the last in the country to announce a decision, is generally opposed to the federal health law but says his decision will help people pay for health coverage in the private market.

Herbert still needs to secure the support of Utah's Republican-controlled Legislature, which has been debating several lawmaker-generated options.

The plan would also need to win approval from federal officials.

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