Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Arkansas legislature is poised to ratify Obamacare

Posted By on Tue, Mar 26, 2013 at 9:47 AM

BOTH SIDES NOW: Sen. Rapert plays a tricky tune on Medicaid expansion.
  • BOTH SIDES NOW: Sen. Rapert plays a tricky tune on Medicaid expansion.
Ernie Dumas' column this week is particularly timely to me since it bears on a little Twitter debate I had this morning with Fiddlin' Sen. Jason Rapert.

Ernie is writing about the growing popularity of Obamacare, including acceptance of it by even Arkansas Republican legislators.

I got into it with Rapert this morning after he Twittered:

The insanity of Obamacare mandate is mind boggling. May voters rid this nation of every democrat that voted this junk into law!

Did this mean Rapert was prepared to vote against the Medicaid expansion in Arkansas? Republicans haven't been trending in that direction. No matter how I tried, I couldn't get him to declare forthrightly on his coming vote, but, as I sensed, it seems more likely he's pre-spinning a pro-Obamacare vote.

He said he resented Obamacare being "rammed down our throats" (I couldn't help but think of the vaginal probe Rapert wanted to ram somewhere else.) He said the legislature was being "forced to choose from bad options." He said Democrats had already made the decision to take Obamacare in Arkansas and would forever bear responsibility.

In short, it sure sounded like Rapert is getting ready to take the billions provided by Obamacare — a decision the Republican majority has the power to defeat — and take credit for making it a better plan, but blame Democrats for any ills that might be perceived. It's called having your cake and eating it too. It's also called hypocrisy. You also could call it wildly inaccurate if Rapert thinks Republicans should get all the credit for the form Medicaid expansion takes, a so-called private option. See Dumas:

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare, celebrated its third birthday Saturday, and you get the feeling that the infant that was so widely unwanted after its difficult birth is gaining family adulation as it develops a personality and character.

Even diehard Republican legislators who demanded an abortion and then, after President Obama signed it into law, wanted it euthanized are showing signs of accepting the little girl as part of the family.

They aren’t saying so, mind you, but they are claiming to have imparted some winning personality to the creature themselves. They got Governor Beebe to go to Washington and talk the secretary of health and human services into having poor adults obtain coverage from private insurance companies on the Obamacare exchange rather than through the state-operated direct Medicaid program, which must have been one of the easiest feats any governor ever undertook. The federal government, i.e., taxpayers, will pay for it either way (quite a bit more under the Republican
plan), but 250,000 poor working adults will for the first time be insured against illness and accident...

...Obama’s original plan, outlined in 2007, was to provide private coverage to the uninsured through federally regulated markets and to expand eligibility for Medicaid for those too poor to afford insurance. Medicaid permitted low-income people to obtain coverage through private plans, though states rarely implemented it because private policies were expensive. That’s why the HHS secretary said “sure, no problem” when Beebe offered the Arkansas Republican plan.

It was true Obamacare.

Aye or nay, Sen. Rapert? And if you're an aye, do you really intend to disclaim responsibility for opting to mandate that the federal government spend billions more in Arkansas on health coverage for working poor? Good on you for the vote, if so. But man up. Take full credit.

Tags: , , , ,

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (6)

Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-6 of 6

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Cotton seeks friendlies for town hall

    Is Tom Cotton working to pack his town hall Wednesday in Springdale with fans. So says one source.
    • Feb 21, 2017
  • Campus gun bill clears committee

    The so-called compromise amendment that will allow anyone 25 or older with a training certificate carry a concealed weapon on public college campuses was approved in a Senate committee this afternoon.
    • Feb 21, 2017
  • DiPippa to be interim dean at UALR Law School

    UALR Chancellor Andrew Rogerson told staff today that law professor John DiPippa would serve as interim dean of the Bowen School of Law while a search is made for a permanent dean. The appointment takes effect in July. The search should begin in the fall.
    • Feb 21, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Farewell to a school teacher, Susan Turner Purvis

    A tribute to a great school teacher, Susan Turner Purvis, who died yesterday. Far too soon.
    • Jul 17, 2015
  • Monticello preparing for KKK rally

    Drew County authorities are taking precautions, but also watching their words, about apparent plans for a Ku Klux Klan meeting Saturday.
    • Jul 22, 2015
  • In defense of Planned Parenthood and abortion rights

    An op-ed in today's New York Time by Katha Pollitt says what I've been struggling to say about the reaction to the attack on women's reproductive rights launched by means of the undercover videos made by anti-abortion activists.
    • Aug 5, 2015

Most Shared

Visit Arkansas

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

"Locally Labeled" passport expands to accommodate booming brew scene

As if great beer weren't reward enough, you can earn prizes for sampling local craft beverages

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation