Group says Medicaid cuts could cost Illinois jobs

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Another advocacy group is using the prospect of job losses to oppose Gov. Pat Quinn's plan to cut Medicaid.

The Responsible Budget Coalitions says Illinois would lose almost 38,000 jobs and millions of dollars in economic activity related to health care. The coalition includes advocates for retirees, housing and other services.

The Democratic governor wants to cut Medicaid spending by about $2 billion. He proposes raising cigarette taxes to generate an additional $700 million.

Ralph Martire (mar-TEER'-ee) of the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability said Wednesday that cutting Medicaid won't save that much. That's because spending less also means the state would get less in federal matching funds.

Families USA and the Campaign for Better Health Care are also predicting job losses if Illinois cuts Medicaid.

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