Monday, June 09, 2014

Puckett says good-bye to Virginia Democrats and Medicaid expansion

Virginia state politics has entered a new era in stymying aspects of the affordable care law.  Virginia Republicans have enlisted a self-serving Democratic Senator to spoil the chances that medicaid will be expanded in Virginia.

Democrats in Virginia's legislature have been preparing to expand medicaid and were working on a budget which included it.  That budget was moving forward and expected to pass with medicaid expansion in it.  The balance of power in the Virginia Senate was tied at 20 to 20 but that is now about to change.

Democrat senator Phillip Puckett will resign from the Virginia legislature and leaves a balance of power in the hands of Republicans running Virginia.  The GOP will now take over the chairmanships
Phillip Puckett (D-VA)
and leadership of the Virginia legislature, thus ending newly elected Governor Terry McAuliff's campaign pledge to expand medicaid.  Some 400,000 people now have no possibility of gaining access to healthcare in the near future.

The circumstances surrounding Senator Puckett's resignation is very suspicious.  Reportedly, Puckett's resignation was done on the promise that he would be given a position on the state tobacco commission while his daughter would get a state judicial appointment compliments of Virginia Republican leadership.  Because of the public outrage over this attempted bribe, Puckett has refused to accept the deal, however with Puckett's resignation, the Republicans still get their part of the bargain and gain the control they needed to allow hundreds of thousands of poor people to die of their health issues.

If you are Republican, you should be ashamed of your party.  If you are a Puckett, you should be ashamed of your family.  If you are a Virginia voter, you have your chance to rectify this in the fall.