Friday, June 24, 2011

Republicans Base Health Care Strictly on Politics

Further proof that Republicans base their votes on politics and not policy. The Money Follows the Person was proposed and signed into the law by President George W. Bush. The grants provided by Money Follows the Person is part of Medicaid. The grants helps keep the elderly and the disabled out of assisted living homes. Republicans in the Florida legislature voted it down because Money Follows the Person has been merged into Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

It was generally, a party-line vote, but Republican senators J.D. Alexander and Joe Negron broke ranks and supported the request. Alexander hesitated before his vote, saying he hoped his colleagues would "vote their conscience." The votes from Negron and Alexander meant the Senate favored the request, but House members gave it a thumbs-down, so the measure failed.

The Money Follows the Person grant was created in 2005 under President George W. Bush to keep elderly and disabled people out of nursing homes by providing home health aides and other services. The grants save states money because Medicaid usually pays if clients stay in nursing homes.

But the program is now part of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and authorizing the spending would "go against" a "policy" promulgated by House Speaker Dean Cannon to not implement any part of the legislation federal health care law, said Cannon spokeswoman Katie Betta.

Rep. Denise Grimsley repeated the Republican talking point of about turning down "duplicative" services.

"I realize they're federal dollars, but they're taxpayer dollars," Grimsley said.

Did Grimley just came to the realization that the government is funded by tax dollars? As far as "duplicative" services, Florida has made cuts to Medicaid. Now Florida is turning down federal funding. Florida is in the bottom half of states for receiving federal money. Florida gets back $0.97 for every dollar sent the federal government. Compare that to New Mexico getting $2.03 for every $1.00 sent. I classic example of how badly Florida manages health care is Gov. Jeb Bush made Kidcare go broke by turning down federal funding and neglect.

Do these Republicans even realize they voted against a George W. Bush proposal? Considering how willfully ignorant these people are on policy, I doubt it.

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