Friday, January 3, 2014

To Support His Presidential Ambitions, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker Will Kick 77,000 Adults Out of Medicaid

No Sacrifice is Too Great, As Long as It is Someone Else Sacrificing

In Wisconsin the Republican Gov. Scott Walker is running for President on the basis of his sneak attack legislation that obliterated public employee unions.  Well obliterated the ones that did not support him in his election, those that did support him, no obliteration.  Now Mr. Walker is considering a run for President.  Well actually he is running forVice President for nobody ever says that, so the charade of running for President is what is needed here.

In order to burnish his cruelty credentials, credentials necessary for any serious consideration for advancement in the Republican Party,  Mr. Walker is going to eliminate Medicaid coverage for 77,000 adults.

Mr. Walker comes at the issue from an unusual position. Wisconsin has long provided Medicaid benefits to a wider income range than most other states, allowing adults at up to twice the poverty level to enroll. But after the state hit spending caps in 2009, the year before Mr. Walker was elected, officials suspended new enrollment, locking out tens of thousands of eligible people.
The governor's plan is to change the Medicaid rules for most adults to cover only those earning at the poverty level or below, currently $11,490 annually for a single person. That would free up funds to end the enrollment freeze and add about 82,000 adults. But an estimated 77,000 people, mostly adults, would lose their Medicaid coverage received under existing rules.

Oh, so he is adding 82,000 adults, and we don't know why Medicaid was not already available to people below the poverty level, possibly they were just not poor enough, or may be they just deserve bad health care because they are poor.  Who knows?  So what about the 77,000 he kicks out who will have no health care coverage?

Well there is this.

At the same time, Mr. Walker would turn down federal money offered to states that make Medicaid available for people earning up to 133% of the poverty level.

And of course the argument says those 77,000 can now buy coverage with federal subsidies, except they cannot.  See even with the subsidies many of the near poor cannot afford health insurance, which is why the Feds want to cover everyone with 133% of the poverty level with Medicaid.  And those that can will pay premiums and co-pays and deductibles, further destroying their standard of living.  It’s like a Republican dream come true.

As for why Mr. Walker will revel in less of Wisconsin’s working poor getting health insurance, there is this.

"One of the governor's favorite talking points is that he doesn't view success by the number of the people on the government programs, but he views success by the number of people who can get off of them," said Deputy Health Services Secretary Kevin Moore.

Well here’s a suggestion for Mr. Walker.  Scott, why don’t you decline your government provided and subsidized health insurance and go out in the private market and buy your own.  Really, why don’t you.  Then there would be 77,001 people off the government programs, and that last one would bring holiday joy to all of us. 

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