Medicare–insurance for seniors and the disabled–is an entirely federal program. Medicaid–the program for low-income persons–is jointly financed and operated by the federal and state governments. Health reform expands Medicaid and aims to make Medicare more efficient. It also arguably paves the way for Medicaid to become a purely federal program, which is something that most states would be pleased with, given the difficulties they have in balancing their annual budgets because of Medicaid costs. There are many other benefits to federalizing Medicaid, which are outlined in a policy paper authored by The Century Foundation’s Vice-President Greg Anrig. I’ve chosen to write about this topic today primarily because I want you to have the entire weekend to read the paper. Some of you might see shifting Medicaid away from the states to the feds as taking the country further down the road towards a single payer system. Others of you might see it as one of the most viable options for confronting some of the major problems in our health care system and our state economies. In my opinion, both of you would be right.