CHICAGO - The Medicaid expansion program that is part of federal health care reform is fast becoming one of the most controversial aspects of the new law, but whether or not a state ends up participating could end up having little impact on its credit, industry experts say.

Before the Supreme Court's ruling last week, the Affordable Care Act was expected to mean 32 million more Americans would be covered by insurance. Of that, 16 million were expected to be covered under Medicaid, the joint program paid for by individual states and the federal government that typically accounts as a top budget item for states.

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