Sunday, July 1, 2012

Why Do Republicans Hate American Children

Why Do Republicans Hate American Children

Since August 2011, 89,000 children in Pennsylvania have lost their Medicaid coverage, including many with life-threatening illnesses who were mistakenly deemed ineligible. The state currently hasn’t a clue whether many of these children have any healthcare coverage at all.

....Enter Republican Governor Tom Corbett and his anti-spending, anti-government secretary of public welfare, Gary Alexander. They decided to plow ahead with their new approach to eligibility verification: ten days to receive and process the overdue renewals, and an assumption of ineligibility if the applications weren’t reviewed during that time period.

Predictably, the offices couldn’t keep up with the new deluge of mail. It doesn’t seem a stretch to suggest that a Republican administration—hostile to Medicaid—had identified a weakness in the system, exploited it, so that it could reduce spending while bolstering its claim that the system is broken.

Who are some of the victims wronged by the Corbett-Alexander approach to children’s health? A 5-year-old with leukemia; a 2-year-old with a congenital heart disorder; a severely disabled 12-year-old who requires home healthcare; 9-year-old twins, one with autism, the other with a hearing impairment; a 1-year-old with cerebral palsy.

Imagine, a parent of a toddler battling cancer, and suddenly a need to—as one advocate put it—“engage in a Kafkaesque process of getting your kid back on Medicaid.”

What is also deeply disturbing is this: normally when a child is no longer Medicaid-eligible in Pennsylvania parents are referred to the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), a federally subsidized healthcare program for low-income kids. The state takes great pride in near universal coverage of children—it offered one of the first CHIP programs in the country in 1992. But as advocates watched Medicaid enrollment fall off a cliff—89,000 dropped between August 2011 and January 2012—CHIP enrollment remained flat.

Where the hell are the kids? advocates began to ask.

DPW’s initial explanation was that the 89,000 kids dropped included families that moved out of state or were no longer income-eligible. But, when pressed for an accounting, DPW’s own analysis revealed that the number of families falling within these categories is paltry.

Secretary Alexander also played games with the numbers. As recently as May 1, during an interview on Pennsylvania public radio, he said: “It wasn’t children that were removed, it was families. We call them cases—so that there are parents and children.”

But Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to improving the health, education and wellbeing of children and youth throughout the state, says that simply isn’t true. It points to DPW’s own records, which show that the 89,000 figure represents children dropped from Medicaid.

As long as you are a mass of cells Republicans love you so much they would start throwing mothers, doctors and nurses in jail to protect. Though goodness help you once you are born. That creepy "love" that Republican had for that mass of cells turns into pure red hate.

Playing Fast and Furious With a Man's Reputation

Happy now, Darrell Issa? The effort you led to discredit Attorney General Eric Holder got you what you wanted from the beginning: a vote to hold in contempt the Attorney General of the United States. You told the New York Times, "This was not the outcome I had sought." There's a word for that.

Regardless, you've earned your coveted footnote: the Congressman who brought about the first such sanction of a sitting cabinet member in U.S. history. And not just any cabinet member, but the one responsible for effective, professional, nonpartisan law enforcement. Not even Alberto Gonzales or John Ashcroft, two of history's least distinguished incumbents of the AG's office, met the fate of Eric Holder.

....On the subject of saving lives, the loss of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was a tragedy no matter who was responsible or how it happened. But let's not forget the Bush administration's multiple uses of the same tactics used to "climb the ladder" of the hierarchy of Mexican drug cartels. Such tracing and tracking of firearms and other items of evidence (think drug supplies, marked bills, stolen property) is common in law enforcement. If managed lawfully and competently (much in question in this case), it's an essential public safety tool.

For a politician to suggest that the agent's life would have been spared had the federal government not allowed the putative murder weapon to migrate south of the border, is naïve or disingenuous. (Thanks in part to the pro-gun lobby, drug-dealing thugs on either side of the border have no trouble buying or stealing vast arsenals of high-powered weaponry.)

But seeking to make political hay of the death of Agent Terry is despicable. The same could be said of efforts to taint the reputation of the highest law enforcement official in the land.

Send an e-mail or fax to your Congressional Representative today requesting they start censure proceedings against Darrell Issa (R-CA) for using his committee chairmanship to pursue a political vendetta against Attorney General Holder.