Democrats in Tennessee are rallying to expand Medicaid in the state after 12 hospitals in rural areas around the state have closed.
At a news conference on Monday, Democratic legislators are calling on Gov. Bill Lee to take up the issue.
“No citizen can avoid getting sick at all, and so it’s inhumane of us to have some of the best healthcare that is offered as elected officials and deny our everyday citizens who we represent the ability to have healthcare access,” said state Rep. London Lamar, D-Memphis.
One of the people who spoke at the press conference was an Army veteran who had a string of heart attacks while she was in her 30s.
She said her lack of health insurance during that time is why she went on to develop breast cancer.
“Every day we go without expanding Medicaid in this state, people are going to die,” said Kelly Gregory, Moral Movement Tennessee. “Lives are going to be lost.”
The Democrats called on Lee to take up the issue and fulfil a campaign promise he had of fixing Medicaid.