Yesterday I reported that state Senator Jason Rapert announced (while attending AAI’s Monday town hall meeting in Conway) that he wanted the legislature to delay passage of the “private option” Medicaid expansion. Now the AP has picked up on the story.
According to a new report, Rapert reiterated his calls for delay this morning at the Capitol, saying lawmakers should take three weeks off to go talk to their constituents and then reconvene. Talk to your constituents? What a great idea!
There is no good reason for Arkansas to rush through a plan that has only been public for a few days. This decision will affect the health care quality of all Arkansans and the pocketbooks of all taxpayers. Perhaps, as many have suggested, we should take time to get this one right?
Ideally, Senator Rapert would call for legislators to abandon the “private option” scheme altogether, but his decision is certainly a move in the right direction. I can live with delay, particularly if it means more time for Arkansans to study this plan and talk to their “representatives.”
Senator Rapert is making the right decision for taxpayers. Unfortunately, the House voted to pass the enabling legislation today, but the real test will be on the appropriations bill. It needs 3/4ths support to pass both chambers; it is hard to say whether or not the votes are there. The bill only got 62 votes today, but it will take 75 votes to fund it. As always, stay tuned to The Arkansas Project.com for updates.
Special bonus: Obamacare’s latest bait-and-switch! Bloomberg News is reporting on the Obama administration’s quiet admission that health care exchanges will cost more than double their original estimates — even though less than half of the states have implemented them.
Obamacare is crumbling. Arkansas Republicans shouldn’t give it a “hand up.”