Something amiss as Florida’s 2013 legislative session begins

Gov. Rick Scott

Photo Credit www.flgov.com

On the eve of convening of the 2013 Florida legislative session, in direct opposition to Gov. Rick Scott’s new found position, the House Select Committee on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act voted to reject the expansion of Medicaid.

A decision supported by House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

“We simply cannot count on the federal government to pay 100 percent of the cost for expansion,” Weatherford said. “The facts show that healthcare costs will go up for many Floridians, while access to and quality of healthcare will go down.”

Which brings us back to Scott’s decision to support Medicaid expansion, despite running as a fierce opponent to the federal health care overhaul.

In short, something is amiss here.

As yesterday’s action clearly indicates, House leadership did not support this decision. Nor did any member of the Cabinet, with each member publicly stating as much. And whatever base Scott once had in grassroots support certainly did not support it.

So what was Scott’s motivation? From my perspective, it comes down to two possibilities.

One, it’s as naked an attempt to pander for broad base support — votes — as it appears to be.

But even here, what politician, other than Charlie Crist, rejects party leadership and his own base to appeal to voters who are not all that likely to support them anyway?

Or was leadership playing along with a wink and a nod, to give Scott political cover for not denying Floridians access to healthcare, knowing it was never going to pass?

Along that line, the governor’s “Florida Families First” budget isn’t convincing folks that he cares about families and their needs.

“So thanks governor, in your new found interest in Florida’s families. But it is not genuine and we are not going to forget,” Florida Democratic Party Chair Allison Tant said.

Or, the second possibility is Scott honestly, and mistakenly, believes it’s the right thing to do. A suggestion that brings to mind a quote by C.S. Lewis:

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

In which, I find myself cheering for the first option because the second is even more disturbing.

In truth, a lot of people supported Rick Scott in 2010 because they believed he would offer a break from the status quo. As a result of his own poor judgement and bad decision-making ability, he has rendered the voters choice in 2014 to little more than the better of two evils.

As for Medicaid expansion, a Senate counterpart committee postponed consideration of the issue, so the issue lives on for now.

By the way, if you woke up this morning with the feeling that the state was leaning noticeable toward its northeast quadrant, don’t be alarmed. That’s just the weight of all the checks being stuffed into the pockets of state lawmakers last night.

Seriously, does is make sense to forbid legislators from receiving donations while in session if it’s perfectly legal to bury them in checks the day before session begins?

If you think about it, the law encourages such behavior as it sets a deadline for lobbyists to act. Naturally, lawmakers will say that the donations are a show of support, but, we all know why the checks are written.

Happy legislating!

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Tom Tillison

Tom is a grassroots activist who distinguished himself as one of the top conservative bloggers in Florida before joining BizPac Review.He can be reached at tom@bizpacreview.com
About Tom Tillison

Tom is a grassroots activist who distinguished himself as one of the top conservative bloggers in Florida before joining BizPac Review. He can be reached at tom@bizpacreview.com

  • Taxpayer

    Illegals can and do use our emergency rooms and we pay the bills. Floridians are entitled to affordable health care. Cutting almost one million Floridians out of affordable health care is not an option for me nor was the 12 million dollars they cut for homeless veterans last time.

    In the long run the Medicaid extension will save money by detouring people away from the exorbitant costs of emergency room use as a last resort. The next election will be an eye opener. Here is s site which shows where the real problem lies.

    http://www.opensecrets.org/

  • http://Facebook Richard crouch

    He is another Charlie Christ. he gave in to obomacare, just like /Christ did when oboma took office,Christ screwed us weather we drive or smoke, or did anythng with a Florida Flag, flying over it. i smell a rat. by by in two years, to another useless Governor He is a, non getting big company's to move to Florida. oboma lover, in Rep. clothing.