The Plot Thickens With Carter and Burris

  Posted by Mark Moore at Arkansas Watch on Friday, Februry 8, 2013

The Plot Thickens With Carter and Burris

Lefty Max Brantley from the Arkansas Times wrote a piece (which I rightfully mock here) in which he railed at Republican House Speaker Davy Carter and Public Health Chairman John Burris because the word is out that they want to delay a vote on expanding Medicaid under Obamacare until the fiscal session next year. “If they were honest they would just call for a vote on Medicaid expansion today and just say no and be done with it” Max rants.

That was the one sentence in the article that I mostly agreed with- for the opposite reasons Max supposes. I want them to have the vote before Mike Beebe has a chance to figure out who he has to bribe with our money and who he has to threaten to get Medicaid expansion passed. I now suspect that Carter and Burris are acting at the behest of the Governor when they call for a delay of the vote until next year.

When the coup that put Carter in with heavy Democrat help was going down, I was one of those who thought we should give him a the benefit of a doubt. Increasingly, it appears that I was wrong. I discounted dark rumors that Carter was a secret ally of Dem. Gov. Mike Beebe, and getting easy money from a bank controlled by a long time Beebe friend and ally. Now I am not so sure. Carter’s actions since entering the office give every indication that he is working for Beebe. That includes maneuvering so as to get Obamacare implemented in this state.

Look, Beebe is trying to get the feds to display a little more flexibility. I don’t think they will, because they are fascists to the core, but he is trying and he needs time. Again, he also needs time in order to figure out who to bribe with what and who to threaten with what. None of which changes whether this is a good bill for the state or a bad bill, or whether our bankrupt federal government will keep their promises to fund it once it is started. Beebe needs more time, and Carter is trying to give him more time- with Burris signing off on it.

That’s another thing. Burris is the chair of the Public Health Committee. When I first wrote the article suggesting that the Carter Coup was not necessarily a bad thing, I said that one thing to watch was which Committee got the bill to expand Medicaid. Carter could send that bill to either Public Health or State Agencies. There is a reasonable case for both, but there are more Democrats on Health and more Republicans on State Agencies. I said that one key to watch to find out whether or not Carter is a skunk or not is which committee he sends that bill to. It looks like he wants to send it to Public Health so the answer is not good.

Another advantage of dealing with the bill now is that killing it in committee becomes a more viable option. If you have a session where it is the only policy bill considered then there is a lot more pressure on the committee to pass something out of it. This whole thing seems like special treatment in an effort to get the bill passed when it would fail on the merits were it treated like the other thousand bills in the session.

I don’t know if Max was really mad at the delay or if he is clued in and just playing the game so that we will think that the left is mad over it when it is really their best chance of a powerful throat-shoving opportunity. The sad thing is, between the left and the Speaker, they are fooling some on the right into thinking that the delay is a good thing. That’s misdirection friends. It is not a good thing to give Gov. Mike Beebe anymore time to cajole. It’s not a good thing to give one bill special treatment over a thousand others. Have the vote! If something material changes later then maybe the issue can be revisited, but if and until that happens lets get a vote and get a policy- its your job!

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