Protestors at the Governor's Mansion demand the expansion of Medicaid
Reverend Tom Summers was a key speaker for the rally demanding expansion of Medicaid
Protestors wore t-shirts to encourage voters as midterm elections approach
By: Emmonie Crumblin
The South Carolina Progressive Network rallied at the South Carolina's Governor's Mansion Tuesday afternoon. The group says it wanted to emphasize the consequences of South Carolina government ignoring the needs of medicaid patients.
Governor Nikki Haley rejected federal expansion of Medicaid in the state last year saying it would cost South Carolina too much in the future.
"It's outrageous that the governor and lawmakers refuse to accept federal money to expand medicaid," said retired pastor of the United Methodist Church Reverend Tom Summers.
"It is estimated that close to 1800 people will die in 2014 every year without this expanded Medicaid funding," he said.
The rally at the Governor's Mansion was the first stop of a ten-city tour throughout the state to get the attention of voters as midterm elections approaches.
"We are not telling people who to vote for but what to vote for and that's affordable health care," said Director of the SC Progressive Network Brett Bursey.
He also said the group hopes people vote for sanity and realize healthcare is a right.
During the rally, Reverend Summers compared lawmakers and Medicaid patients to the parable of the Good Samaritan.
"This is what the state is doing, walking by and leaving people in the ditch and they need humane care, they need funding," he said.
Governor Haley didn't respond to the protest. In the past, Haley said Obamacare was bad for the country and that South Carolina should continue to pursue state based solutions.