Illinois lawmakers are facing two critical decisions over how to fully carry out President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. Gov. Pat Quinn is pushing legislation to establish a state-run health insurance exchange to help middle-class citizens and small businesses, along with a multi-billion-dollar expansion of Medicaid to cover the poor.
The state's Democratic leaders generally have supported the new law, but neither proposal will be a slam dunk for passage. The Democratic governor is expected to get support from the hospital industry and major insurance companies for the Medicaid expansion, since it would bring billions of federal dollars to the state. But some legislators object in principle to such an expansion of government programs.
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