Where is Mike Ross? | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Where is Mike Ross?

Posted By on Tue, Sep 22, 2009 at 8:42 AM

U.S. Rep. Mike Ross is careful where he's seen in public. He'll attend town halls packed with opponents of health care reform, some of them planted by the paid operatives stirring this issue in Arkansas and elsewhere. He'll certainly speak to the LR Chamber of Commerce, as he did yesterday at a session sponsored by a major health care provider (Delta Dental). He'll come early and stay late at campaign finance bundlers' parties, held by the health care industry and by major polluters to benefit Ross for his reliable vote on their side.

He won't take calls from the Arkansas Times about the likes of his fund-raisers by polluters shortly before his vote for them in the clean air debate. And today, it's National Public Radio he doesn't want to talk to. Ross was featured prominently in an NPR piece today about representatives standing in the way of universal health coverage despite high numbers of uninsured in their district. Ross claims that he's formed his position from town hall meetings (at one of which, NPR noted, he got a total of three remarks on health care.)

It's a basic truth of political analysis that low-income residents — that is, those most likely to be uninsured — are less likely than middle-class people to attend town meetings and less likely to vote. To state the obvious, the poor are also less likely to make campaign contributions.

Meanwhile, health care corporations and professional organizations have actively engaged the Blue Dogs. So far this year, the Blue Dogs' political action committee has received $301,500 from health care and health insurance PACs. Ross, the coalition's lead negotiator, has received $100,600 for his campaign committee and a PAC that he operates.

Ross got together with health care industry donors in June, around the same time the Blue Dogs were challenging the House bill. The event brought his campaign at least $20,000 from health care PACs.

NPR asked repeatedly to interview Ross over a two-week period. His office didn't respond.

Ross did some pitiful whining yesterday about his critics, safe among the fatcats who finance him. He better hope folks in his district don't read his mewling, because he was talking unhappily about them. That was made clear by the Daily Kos poll (by a non-partisan polling firm). It showed a plurality of people in his district support a government option for health insurance. Moreover, DEMOCRATS favor a public option in his district 74-19. Ross also carries a 42 percent unfavorable rating in his district.

Ross is terrible on any number of issues. He probably is unbeatable, despite the negative numbers. But it would be nice to see a Democrat challenge him in the primary and force Ross to act  like a Democrat for once, not just on health care and the environment, but also on human rights issues where he consistently votes Republican.

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • ACLU: School crisis 60th no time for celebration. Plus, a message for the governor

    Rita Sklar, executive director of the Arkansas affiliate of the American Civil LIberties Union, has issued a statement taking issue with those who view the 60th anniversary of Central High's limited desegregation thanks to federal court and troops as a "celebration." Plus, my own suggestion for Monday speech-makers.
    • Sep 22, 2017
  • City identifies recipients of cop incentive payments who left force

    Blogger Russ Racop shares the fruits of his Freedom of Information Act request to determine who received $5,000 recruiting incentives to join the Little Rock Police Department and then left the force.
    • Sep 22, 2017
  • A Highway 10 traffic solution recommendation

    The Arkansas Department of Transportation has announced its preferences for interchange and other improvements along the Highway 10 corridor between Pleasant Valley Drive and Pleasant Ridge Road.
    • Sep 22, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Charter school accountability: Non-existent in Arkansas

    A state audit finds charter school spending violated state law, but the state Education Department says it has no responsibility for ensuring proper management of charter schools. Say what?
    • Mar 5, 2016
  • Arkansas: Land of .......

    Welcome to Arkansas: Land of cowardly politicians, discriminatory laws, inhumane turkey drops and lots and lots of Trump voters.
    • Oct 8, 2016
  • Policy group urges opposition to new charter seats in Little Rock

    The Arkansas Public Policy Panel is urging supporters of the Little Rock School District to tell state Board of Education members they oppose applications to be heard this week to dramatically expand the number of charter school seats in the Little Rock School District.
    • Mar 9, 2016

Most Shared

  • ASU to reap $3.69 million from estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn

    Arkansas State University announced today plans for spending an expected $3.69 million gift in the final distribution of the estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn, who died in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • The inadequate legacy of Brown

    LRSD continues to abdicate its responsibility to educate poor black students.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



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