MYTH vs. FACT: Immigration Reform Will Introduce Over 30 Million New Foreign Workers To America

Please post your response to this article.  What do you like and what do you not like about this approach to our illegal immigration problem?  What is a practical alternative to solving  the problem of  millions of illegal immigrants living in the US “under the radar” and given “sanctuary” from existing laws in many parts of the country?

MYTH: Passing the immigration bill will result in over 30 million new foreign workers.

  • Senator Jeff Sessions: “We are talking about legislation that will impact virtually every aspect of our society, reshape our entire immigration system, introduce at least 30 million new foreign workers into the economy, and directly impact every single American worker and taxpayer.” (“Sessions Demands More Time on Immigration Bill,” NewsMax, 4/16/13)

FACT: Currently one million people legally immigrate to the United States every year – more than any other nation in the world and a key reason our nation, even with a retiring Baby Boomer generation, does not face severe aging demographic problems like Japan, Russia, and much of Europe. We also currently have about 11 million undocumented people living in the United States who are never leaving because they have families, jobs and roots in our communities. Under our proposal, those living here illegally will be allowed to apply for permanent residence in 10 years once we clear out the current backlog for about 5 million foreigners waiting to legally immigrate to the United States – a long-delayed process this legislation will finally correct. This legislation does not significantly increase long-term, annual migration to the United States, and will dramatically decrease illegal immigration thanks to new border security and immigration enforcement laws. Bottom-line: the size of the future population of the United States will not be significantly impacted by this legislation.

  • When our economy needs foreign workers to fill labor shortages, our modernized system will ensure that future flow of workers is manageable, traceable, fair to American workers, and in line with our economy’s needs.
  • “The latest immigration bill would beef up border security, create a path to citizenship for the country’s 11 million immigrants who entered the country illegally, establish a stronger electronic verification system, set a formula to determine future flows of imigrants [sic] and create low skill and agricultural worker programs. The bill would also increase the availability of high-skilled worker visas.” (Lauren Fox, “Rubio reaches out to GOP senators to build momentum for immigration,” US News, 4/17/13)
  • “The bill would also dramatically change the way the U.S. grants visas and green cards for future immigrants. Among the changes:
    • o   Eliminates the diversity visa lottery …
    • o   Ends the practice of allowing U.S. citizens to petition for green cards for their siblings.
    • o   Creates a “merit-based” visa, which awards up to 250,000 visas a year based on a point system that measures their education and employment, among other criteria.
    • o   Increases the cap on the number of H1B visas, which go primarily to college-educated foreigners in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, from 85,000 to 205,000.
    • o   Creates up to 200,000 visas a year, known as W visas, for people to work in retail, construction, hospitality and janitorial jobs.

Currently, most green cards are issued based on family ties to U.S. citizens – only about 16% of immigrants are granted green cards based on their skills or their possible contributions to the economy. But the changes would increase that number to nearly 50%, said one Senate aide.” (Alan Gomez, “Senate immigration bill offers status, boosts borders,” USA Today, 4/16/13)

Mark Meckler’s Take on Medicaid Expansion

Hello all,

The following was a letter from Mark Meckler.  Please review and comment .. . and most importantly, pick out the key points that mean the most to you and immediately send emails and make phone calls to your state legislators!

To Tea Partiers across Florida:

From my perspective it’s very simple.

1.  Tea Partiers put principle before politics.  One of the core principles of tea partiers is fiscal responsibility.  As tea partiers, our job is to stand on principles, not be convinced by the politics of the moment.  Expanding huge, inefficient, bloated, government programs for which our federal government must borrow 43 cents of every dollar spent is hardly fiscally conservative.  In fact, supporting such a program expansion would be the antithesis of what the movement stands for.

2.  The best conservative Governor’s in the nation are opposing the expansion of Medicaid. 
 Gov. Scott Walker, Gov. Rick Perry, Gov. Bobby Jindal, Gov. Nikki Haley, etc.  When the leading conservative Governors in the nation are rejecting the program, it’s hard to see how tea partiers could think accepting it is a good thing.

3.  Four Important Points about the proposed Medicaid expansion that everyone should know:

Four Important Points About Medicaid Expansion

A.  Support for Medicaid Expansion is Support for Obamacare.  If your tea party group supports the expansion of Medicaid, it is a major statement in support of Obamacare.  One of the major provisions of Obamacare was the expansion of Medicaid, which is intended to dramatically increase the number of people dependent on the federal government.  The rejection of the Medicaid expansion, which states were given the right to do by the Supreme Court in the only conservative victory on Obamacare, is one of the few tools remaining to help prevent Obamacare from swallowing the nation.

B.  The Medicaid Expansion is a Fiscal Nuclear Time Bomb.  Medicaid is a fiscal time bomb; today, states and the federal government jointly fund the program, but over time, Congress is almost certain to curtail its support due to Washington’s fiscal pressures.

C.  The Medicaid Expansion Drives the Cost of Insurance Up for Everyone Else.  Medicaid drives up the cost of insurance for everyone else, because hospitals overcharge people with private insurance to make up for the fact that they’re underpaid by Medicaid.

 

D.  Medicaid is a Broken Program Providing Terrible Health Outcomes.  Medicaid provides the worst health outcomes of any insurance plan in America; in many cases, it’s worse than having no coverage at all.

To me, it’s not even a close call for tea partiers.  If we won’t do our best to hold the line here…we should just fold up our tea party tents and go home.  It is impossible for fiscal conservatives to support the expansion of a bloated, broken federal program that borrows 43% of every dollar spent, and still consider ourselves principled fiscal conservatives.  If we support (or don’t vociferously oppose) the expansion of Medicaid, then the criticism sometimes leveled at us that we are willing to cut, but not when those cuts affect us, is true.  Are we Democrat-lite, or are we true fiscal conservatives who will stand on principle?  In Florida, the time to make that decision is now.

Below you will find a summary of where each state currently stands (as of Feb. 20) on the proposed expansion.

 

Where each state stands on ACA’s Medicaid expansion

A roundup of what each state’s leadership has said about their Medicaid plans

Topics: Health Care ReformMarket TrendsStrategyMedicaidReimbursementFinance

February 20, 2013

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Text last updated on Feb. 20, 2013, at 5:30 p.m. ET

The Supreme Court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) allowed states to opt out of the law’s Medicaid expansion, leaving each state’s decision to participate in the hands of the nation’s governors and state leaders.

Based on lawmakers’ statements, press releases, and media coverage, the Daily Briefing and American Health Line editorial teams have rounded up where each state currently stands on the expansion.

We will continue to update this map and list as more information becomes available. Send us news, tips, and feedback by commenting below or emailing dailybriefing@advisory.com.

indicates a state’s participation in the multistate lawsuit against ACA

NOT PARTICIPATING (13 states)

  • Alabama*: Gov. Robert Bentley (R) on Nov. 13 announced that Alabama will not participate in the Medicaid expansion “because we simply cannot afford it” (Gadsden Times, 11/13; Lyman,Montgomery Advertiser, 11/13).
  • Georgia*: Gov. Nathan Deal (R) in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution/Politico/11 Alive interview on Aug. 28 said, “No, I do not have any intentions of expanding Medicaid,” adding, “I think that is something our state cannot afford.” When asked about the insurance exchanges, Deal said “we do have a time frame for making the decision on that I think, especially on the exchanges,” adding that “we have just a few days after the election in order to make a final determination on that” (Wingfield, “Kyle Wingfield,” Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 8/28).
  • Idaho*: Gov. C.L. Otter (R) in his 2013 State of the State address delivered on Jan. 7 said that while “there is broad agreement that the existing Medicaid program is broken,” the state “face[s] no immediate federal deadline” to address the situation. He added, “We have time to do this right … [s]o I’m seeking no expansion of” the program. Otter said he’s instructed the state Health and Welfare director to “flesh out a plan” that focuses on potential costs, savings and economic impact, which he plans to introduce in 2014 (Ritter Saunders, Boise State Public Radio, 1/7; Young, Huffington Post, 1/7; Petcash, KTVB, 1/7).
  • Louisiana*: Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) in an NBC “Meet the Press” interview on July 1 said, “Every governor’s got two critical decisions to make. One is do we set up these exchanges? And, secondly, do we expand Medicaid? And, no, in Louisiana, we’re not doing either one of those things.” However, state Sen. Karen Carter Peterson (D) and other Democratic leaders after the Nov. 6 election urged Jindal to reconsider his opposition or the state will not be forced to accept a “one-size-fits-all” plan, CBC News “Money Watch” reports (Barrow, New Orleans Times-Picayune, 7/2; “Money Watch,” CBS News, 11/9).
  • Maine*: Gov. Paul LePage (R) on Nov. 16 said that Maine will not participate in the Medicaid expansion. He called the expansion and the state-based insurance exchanges a “degradation of our nation’s premier health care system” (Mistler, Kennebec Journal, 11/16).
  • Mississippi*: Gov. Phil Bryant (R) on Nov. 7 said Mississippi will not participate in the Medicaid expansion, reiterating previous statements that he had made about the ACA provision (Pender/Hall, Jackson Clarion-Ledger, 11/7).
  • North Carolina: Gov. Pat McCrory (R) on Feb. 12 announced that his state will not expand Medicaid or establish its own health insurance marketplace under the Affordable Care Act. McCrory said state officials conducted a comprehensive analysis to determine the advantages and disadvantages of expanding Medicaid and the right type of exchange option in the state, and concluded that it is “abundantly clear that North Carolina is not ready to expand the Medicaid system and that we should utilize a federal exchange.” He said the review included discussions with other governors, White House officials, health care providers, and leaders in the state Legislature (AP/Myrtle Beach Sun News, 2/12; Binker/Burns, “@NCCapitol,” WRAL, 2/12; Cornatzer, Raleigh News & Observer, 2/12).
  • Oklahoma: Gov. Mary Fallin (R) on Nov. 19 said Oklahoma will not participate in the Medicaid expansion. “Oklahoma will not be participating in the Obama Administration’s proposed expansion of Medicaid,” she said in a statement. She noted that the program would cost the state as much as $475 million over the next eight years (Greene, Tulsa World, 11/19).
  • Pennsylvania*: Gov. Tom Corbett (R) on Feb. 5 sent a letter to HHS saying he “cannot recommend a dramatic Medicaid expansion” in Pennsylvania because “it would be financially unsustainable for Pennsylvania taxpayers.” He noted that the expansion would necessitate “a large tax increase on Pennsylvania families” (Tolland, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 2/5).
  • South Carolina*: Gov. Nikki Haley (R) on July 1 announced via Facebook that South Carolina “will NOT expand Medicaid, or participate in any health exchanges.” The state Legislature is expected to make a decision on the Medicaid expansion during the 2013 session (Gov. Haley Facebook page, 7/1; Holleman, Columbia State, 11/9).
  • South Dakota: Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) in his annual budget address on Dec. 4 said he does not plan to participate in the Medicaid expansion. “I really think it would be premature to expand this year,” he said, adding that he hoped for more flexibility for the state program (Montgomery, Sioux Falls Argus Leader, 12/4).
  • Texas*: Gov. Rick Perry (R) in a statement on July 9 said, “If anyone was in doubt, we in Texas have no intention to implement so-called state exchanges or to expand Medicaid under ObamaCare.” Perry also sent a letter to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on July 9 asserting this position. The Dallas Morning News reported that on Nov. 8, Perry reiterated his opposition to the expansion, saying, “Nothing changes from our perspective” (Office of Gov. Perry release, 7/9; Gov. Perry letter, 7/9; Garrett, Dallas Morning News, 11/11).
  • Wisconsin*: Gov. Scott Walker (R) on Feb. 13 announced his rejection of the Medicaid expansion. He proposed an alternative plan that would expand coverage to low-income state residents through private health care exchanges (Spicuzza, Wisconsin State Journal, 2/13).

LEANING TOWARD NOT PARTICIPATING (5 states)

  • Iowa*: Gov. Terry Branstad (R) on July 2 said that he expects to opt out of the expansion. Reiterating the position in an Aug. 22 interview, Branstad spokesperson Tim Albrecht said the governor remains opposed to the expansion. Branstad likely will instead pursue state-based efforts to make health insurance coverage more affordable, Albrecht said (Totland, Washington Times, 7/2; Wiser, Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier, 7/3; AP/Omaha World-Herald, 8/22).
  • Nebraska*: Gov. Dave Heineman (R) in a statement on his website on June 28 said, “As I have said repeatedly, if this unfunded Medicaid expansion is implemented, state aid to education and funding for the University of Nebraska will be cut or taxes will be increased. If some state senators want to increase taxes or cut education funding, I will oppose them.” Heineman on July 11 sent a letter to state lawmakers saying the state could not afford the expansion, but he stopped short of saying that the state will not participate in the expansion, according to Reuters(Office of Gov. Heineman release, 6/28; Wisniewski, Reuters, 7/11).
  • New Jersey: Gov. Chris Christie (R)—in an interview on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends” in July—said, “Medicaid is pretty well expanded in our state already because of the legacy of previous Democratic governors” and noted that he is leaning toward not raising the program’s eligibility limit any further. In April 2011, New Jersey opted to expand Medicaid eligibility ahead of 2014 to nearly 70,000 childless adults through a Section 1115 waiver allowed under the ACA. The Examiner on Nov. 12 reported that New Jersey likely would opt out of the expansion (Defalco,AP/Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/15/2011; “Fox News Insider,” Fox News, 7/3; Livio/Friedman, Newark Star-Ledger, 7/3; Reilly, The Examiner, 11/12).
  • Virginia: Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) on Nov. 8 said he opposes expanding Medicaid, noting that he does not “believe the federal government can possibly deliver its commitment to fully fund the program, and I don’t want to be part of contributing trillions of dollars to the national debt.” However, McDonnell said Virginia could change course at a later date (AP/Modern Healthcare, 11/8).
  • Wyoming*: Gov. Matt Mead (R) on Nov. 30 recommended that Wyoming not participate in the Medicaid expansion, but added that his position could change in the future and urged “everyone to keep an open mind on this.” The state legislature will make the final decision on whether to expand the program, the AP/Jackson Hole Daily reports (Brown, Wyoming Tribune Eagle, 12/1; Graham, AP/Jackson Hole Daily, 12/1).

LEANING TOWARD PARTICIPATING (3 states)

  • Kentucky: Gov. Steve Beshear (D) when asked about the expansion in July said, “If there is a way that we can afford that will get more coverage for more Kentuckians, I’m for it.” However, state lawmakers are putting pressure on Beshear to reject the expansion (Office of Gov. Beshear release, 6/28; AP/Evansville Courier & Press, 6/28; AP/Evansville Courier & Press, 7/17; Autry, WYU, 7/5; Cross, Louisville Courier-Journal, 6/29).
  • New York: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) in a statement on his website on June 28 said he was “pleased the Supreme Court upheld the [ACA]” and looks forward “to continuing to work together with the Obama administration to ensure accessible, quality care for all New Yorkers.” On July 26, Danielle Holahan—project director for New York’s health insurance exchange planning—said the state “largely meet[s] the federal required Medicaid levels already.” Although Cuomo’s office has not officially announced a decision, the Associated Press reported on Nov. 13 that New York will expand Medicaid (Office Gov. Cuomo release, 6/28; Grant, North Country Public Radio, 7/27; Delli Santi/Mulvihill, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 11/13).
  • Oregon: Gov. John Kitzhaber (D) said on June 28 that he is confident that the Oregon Legislature will approve a state Medicaid decision. In an interview with the Oregonian just hours after the Supreme Court issued its ruling on the ACA, Kitzhaber said, “We’ll make a decision on whether or not to expand the Medicaid program really based on, I think, the resources we have available in the general fund for that purpose going forward” (Budnick, Oregonian, 6/28).

PARTICIPATING (23 states and the District of Columbia)

  • Arizona*: Gov. Jan Brewer (R) in her 2013 State of the State speech, delivered on Jan. 14, announced that Arizona will participate in the Medicaid expansion, which would extend health care services to an estimated 300,000 more state residents. Brewer noted that the expansion plan will “include a circuit-breaker that automatically” would reduce enrollment if federal reimbursement rates decrease. Brewer was expected to offer further details of the plan in her budget proposal, which is subject to approval by the Republican-controlled Legislature (Christie,AP/Sacramento Bee, 1/14; Sanders/Wingett Sanchez, Arizona Republic, 1/14; Fischer, Sierra Vista Herald, 1/14; Safier, Tucson Citizen, 1/14).
  • Arkansas: Gov. Mike Beebe (D) on Sept. 11 said he planned to participate in the Medicaid expansion, the Associated Press reports. According to the AP, Beebe agreed to participate in the expansion after officials assured him the state could opt out later if it faces a financial crunch. Beebe said, “I’m for it. I think it’s good for our people because it’s helping folks that don’t have insurance now that are working their tails off. They’re not sitting on a couch somewhere asking for something” (Brantley, Arkansas Times, 9/11).
  • California: Gov. Jerry Brown (D) in a statement on June 28 said the Supreme Court’s ruling “removes the last roadblock to fulfilling President Obama’s historic plan to bring health care to millions of uninsured citizens.” California got a head start on expanding its Medicaid program in November 2010 with its “Bridge to Reform” program, which aimed to bring at least two million uninsured Californians into Medicaid (Office of Gov. Brown release, 6/28; DeBord, “KPCC News,” KPCC, 6/28).
  • Colorado*: Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) on Jan. 3 announced that his state will participate in the expansion. In a news release, his office said the move would extend Medicaid coverage to about 160,000 low-income residents and save Colorado an estimated $280 million over 10 years without affecting the state’s general fund (Stokols, KDVR, 1/3; Wyatt, AP/Denver Post, 1/3).
  • Connecticut: Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) was among the first governors to sign up for the Medicaid expansion after the ACA was enacted in March 2010. Soon after the Supreme Court ruling on June 28, Malloy said “it’s great … [and a] very important decision for the people of Connecticut. 500,000 people would have lost coverage if Republicans had their way” (Davis, WTNH, 6/28).
  • Delaware: Gov. Jack Markell (D) in a statement on June 28 said, “The Supreme Court’s ruling enables Delaware to continue to implement provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to provide access to health care benefits for Delawareans.” He added, “On the Medicaid front, Delaware already voluntarily expanded the state’s Medicaid coverage program in 1996 to cover many Delawareans not previously covered” (Office of Gov. Markell release, 6/28).
  • District of Columbia: D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray (D) in a statement on June 28 said, “The District is not at risk of losing any Medicaid funding as a result of this ruling, because District officials have already begun implementation of the ACA’s Medicaid-expansion provisions and will continue to implement the expansion” (Executive Office of the Mayor release, 6/28).
  • Florida*: Gov. Rick Scott (R) on Feb. 20 announced that the state will participate in the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, citing HHS’s conditional support for a waiver to shift most of the state’s Medicaid beneficiaries into a managed-care program. However, Scott said that Florida would only participate in the expansion for three years before reevaluating the decision. Supporters of the ACA heralded Florida’s shift as a major reversal; Scott mounted his successful campaign for governor in 2010, in part, by being one of the nation’s foremost critics of President Obama’s planned health reforms (Kennedy/Fineout, Associated Press, 2/20; Office of Gov. Scott release, 2/20).
  • Hawaii: Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) in a statement on June 28 welcomed the Supreme Court’s ruling and said the ACA “is our ally” in the effort to “support a health care system that ensures high quality, safety and sustainable costs.” Pat McManaman, director of the state Department of Human Services, said Hawaii’s Medicaid eligibility requirements in July would fall in line with the law’ guidelines, meaning an additional 24,000 people will be eligible for the program by 2014 (Office of Gov. Abercrombie release, 6/28; Garcia, AP/CBS News, 6/29).
  • Illinois: Gov. Pat Quinn (D) on June 28 praised the court’s decision and said he “will continue to work with President Obama to help working families get the healthcare coverage they need,” including expanding Medicaid (Office of the Governor release, 6/28; Thomason, Rock River Times, 7/3; Ehley, Fiscal Times, 8/20).
  • Maryland: Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) in a statement on June 28 said the Supreme Court’s decision “gives considerable momentum to our health care reform efforts here in Maryland,” adding that the state will move forward to implement the overhaul (Office of the Governor release, 6/28).
  • Massachusetts: Gov. Deval Patrick (D) in late June said Massachusetts is “an early expansion state as you know and we’re expecting further resources from the federal government to sustain the experiment here in Massachusetts.” Patrick called the ruling “good news for us” (Walker, YNN, 6/28).
  • Michigan*: Gov. Rick Snyder (R), in a statement released on Feb. 6, announced that his fiscal year 2014 budget proposal includes a plan to expand the state’s Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act. The plan would extend Medicaid benefits to about 320,000 eligible residents. Snyder said the plan contains safeguards that will ensure the financial stability of the program and protect against changes in the government’s financial commitment to the expansion (Office of Gov. Snyder release, 2/6).
  • Minnesota: Gov. Mark Dayton (D) said in a statement on June 28 said, “Today’s ruling will be met with relief by the Minnesotans whose lives have already been improved by this law.” Dayton in 2011 used federal money to expand Medicaid early to 84,000 adults with annual incomes below $8,400 (Lohn, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 6/28).
  • Missouri: Gov. Jay Nixon (D) on Nov. 29 announced that Missouri will participate in the Medicaid expansion. Nixon said he will include the expansion in the state budget proposal he submits to lawmakers. “We’re not going to let politics get in the way of doing the best thing for our state,” he said (Crisp, “Political Fix,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 11/29).
  • Montana: Gov.-elect Steve Bullock (D) — who takes office on Jan. 7 — on Jan. 4 announced several changes to outgoing Gov. Brian Schweitzer’s (D) two-year budget recommendations, but retained the proposal to expand Medicaid. During a news conference, Bullock said the Medicaid expansion is part of his “Access Health Montana” plan to increase health care coverage for more Montana families. (Johnson, Billings Gazette, 1/5; Johnson, Montana Standard, 1/5).
  • Nevada*: Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) on Dec. 11 announced that the state will participate in the Medicaid expansion. “Though I have never liked the Affordable Care Act because of the individual mandate it places on citizens, the increased burden on businesses and concerns about access to health care, the law has been upheld by the Supreme Court,” Sandoval said in a statement, adding, “As such, I am forced to accept it as today’s reality and I have decided to expand Nevada’s Medicaid coverage” (Damon, Las Vegas Sun, 12/11).
  • New Hampshire: Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) in her Feb. 14 budget address said that New Hampshire will opt into the ACA’s Medicaid expansion because “it’s a good deal…[that will] allow us to save money in existing state programs, while increasing state revenues.” A state report estimates that the expansion will cost New Hampshire about $85 million through 2020, but will bring in $2.5 billion in federal funds and help reduce the number of uninsured residents from roughly 170,000 to 71,000 (Ramer, AP/Seacoastonline.com, 2/14)
  • New Mexico: Gov. Susana Martinez (R) on Jan. 9 announced that her state will participate in the Medicaid expansion, which potentially could extend health coverage to nearly 170,000 additional low-income uninsured residents. Martinez noted that contingency measures will be established if federal funding for the expansion diminishes, which would mean scaling back the expansion by dropping newly covered beneficiaries from the Medicaid rolls (Massey/Montoya Bryan, AP/Santa Fe New Mexican, 1/9; Schirtzinger, Santa Fe Reporter, 1/9; Reichbach, New Mexico Telegram, 1/9).
  • North Dakota*: Gov. Jack Dalrymple (R) in January said the politics associated with the ACA should not prevent North Dakota from participating in the Medicaid expansion. He is supporting a bill that would allow the state health department to access federal funds allocated through the ACA. Dalrymple also said he will include the expansion in his budget proposal and that members of his staff will testify in favor of the expansion before state lawmakers (Jerke, Grand Forks Herald, 1/12).
  • Ohio*: Gov. John Kasich (R) on Feb. 4 announced that the state will be participating in the Medicaid expansion, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. He made the announcement in his two-year budget announcement, but warned that Ohio would “reverse this decision” if the federal government does not provide the funds it has pledged to the expansion (Tribble, Cleveland Plain Dealer, 2/4).
  • Rhode Island: Gov. Lincoln Chaffee (I) in a statement on his website on June 28 said, “I have fully committed to ensuring Rhode Island is a national leader in implementing health reform whatever the Supreme Court decision, and this just reinforces that commitment.” According to Steven Costantino, the state’s secretary of health and human services, “The expansion is easy to do and makes sense.” Moreover, on July 12, USA Today reported that Chaffee planned to participate in the expansion (Chaffee statement, 6/28; Wolf, USA Today, 7/12; Radnofsky et al.,Wall Street Journal, 7/2).
  • Vermont: Gov. Peter Shumlin (D) on June 28 said Vermont’s Medicaid program already meets the requirements under the health reform law’s Medicaid expansion (Steimle, WCAX, 7/1).
  • Washington*: In an email responding to a query by American Health Line, Karina Shagren—a deputy communications director in Gov. Chris Gregoire’s (D) administration—in early July said “the governor supports the Medicaid expansion—and Washington will move forward.” U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee (D)—who supports the expansion—was elected governor on Nov. 6 (Shagren email, 7/5; Washington Secretary of State website, 11/12).

UNDECIDED/NO COMMENT (8 states)

  • Alaska*: Gov. Sean Parnell (R) on Aug. 8 said he is guarded on the expansion “because our history with the federal government right now is they cut what they promise to fund.” Parnell said he wants to thoroughly understand the costs to the state before making a decision (Bohrer, AP/San Francisco Chronicle, 8/8).
  • Indiana*: Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) in a statement on June 29 said, “Any decision to expand Medicaid in 2014 is entirely the province of the next General Assembly and governor.” U.S. Rep. Mike Pence (R) was elected governor on Nov. 6. In a position statement earlier this year, Pence noted that the Medicaid expansion would double “down on an already broken and unaffordable Medicaid system.” Addressing the Affordable Care Act as a whole, he wrote, “I believe the State of Indiana should take no part in this deeply flawed healthcare bureaucracy” (Office of Gov. Daniels release, 6/29; Pence letter).
  • Kansas*Gov. Sam Brownback (R), who has been a vocal opponent of the Affordable Care Act, has not stated whether to opt in or out of the Medicaid expansion, the Associated Pressreported on Nov. 9 (AP/NECN, 11/9).
  • Tennessee: Gov. Bill Haslam (R) has not decided whether Tennessee will participate in the Medicaid expansion. However, two lawmakers—Sen. Brian Kelsey (R) and Rep. Jeremy Durham (R)—already have committed to introducing legislation that would block expansion, and the state’s new Republican supermajority in the General Assembly means such a bill could pass (Bohs, “Bohs Column,” The Jackson Sun, 11/9).
  • Utah*: In an email responding to a query by American Health Line, Nate McDonald—public information officer for Gov. Gary Herbert (R), who won re-election in the state’s gubernatorial race in November 2012—said “[n]o official decision” has been made on the Medicaid expansion (McDonald email, 11/9).
  • West Virginia: Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D) in a statement on his website on June 28 said, “We know what the law is but as I’ve said before, I will continue to do what is best for West Virginia … We’re going to review the Supreme Court’s ruling, and work with our federal delegation on how we move forward.” In the state’s gubernatorial race in November 2012, Tomblin was re-elected (Office of Gov. Tomblin release, 6/28; AP/Marietta Times, 11/7).

Hope this helps you in your work in Florida.

Mark

Mark Meckler, President
Citizens for Self-Governance

Entitlement Reform in Florida — What is Gov. Scott thinking?

Hello all,

I received this copy of a presentation that Governor Walker gave in Wisconsin on Feb 13, 2013.   2013 Gov Walker Entitlement Reform in Wisconsin

This is an excellent analysis of the entitlement situation in Wisconsin.  As you probably already know, Governor Walker has turned down the Medicaid expansion with ObamaCare based on his concern that the federal government will not meet its commitments and the additional and significant expense burden of an expanded program will fall squarely on the shoulders of his state, taking them once again into the red.

Quite surprisingly our supposedly anti-ObamaCare Governor Scott has made a last minute change of mind and wants to implement the Medicaid expansion in Florida!

Interestingly enough, I’ve not seen such a thorough analysis come from our Governor Scott like what we see here from Governor Walker.  Was Governor Scott’s decision based on data and financial risk analysis . . . or based on his perceived political needs if he is forced to run against former governor, Charlie Crist?  Honestly, I do not know for sure but I think it is the later.

We have one last chance to turn this sinking ship — contact our state legislators and let them know that we do not buy into the need or the intelligence of the decision to trust the federal government and expand Medicaid.  Tell them that Governor Scott is wrong when he thinks that he can just turn it off if the federal government defaults on its promises!  Where is the analysis on which they, too, will base their decision?

Let’s learn from this sequestration fiasco.  Our federal legislators bet that it would never come down to this and let the President Obama force it into legislation.  Not only is it imminent, he has now put the blame on the conservatives!  The same thing will happen when the Medicaid balloon pops!

Yours in hope & action,

Pam

PBCTP Leadership Changes

Hello friends,

It is only after considerable prayer and with sadness that I am resigning as the County Coordinator for the Palm Beach County Tea Party. I believe strongly that term limits and new leadership are both refreshing and critical to the long-term success of any program.

More importantly, this move will enable me to better contribute to the Palm Beach County Tea Party in the areas that I believe will will be critical in the coming 23 months before the 2014 midterm elections:
* Oversight — keeping our members up to date on key local, state, and federal issues and creating action alerts when needed.
* Hispanic Outreach
* College Outreach

I will continue to serve on the board and as the liaison to both the Tea Party Patriots and the Tea Party Alliance.

Please let me know if you would like to join me in any of these three programs! We will have some fun and definitely create value!

The board is actively recruiting my replacement. I can tell you that this is an exciting and fulfilling job. With the new addition of a Communications Director,Richard Bock, and my new role, the director position will be less time intensive and will be able to focus on strategy and operational efficiencies.

Other Changes in Our Organization

Jupiter/PBG Chapter
Gary Summers has resigned as the Chapter Coordinator for Jupiter/Palm Beach Gardens. Gary had only lived in Florida one month when he found us and almost immediately went to work as our Jupiter/PBG Chapter Leader. He did an awesome job despite his work and family commitments. He is now involved in a business start-up and must focus on that in the coming months. Thank you, Gary, for all that you have done for PBCTP in the past year!

Laura Hanley has accepted this position starting immediately. Laura has been involved in Palm Beach County politics and grassroots efforts for years and, through her efforts, willingness to work and effervescent personality, has a large network of friends and supporters. We look forward to working with her in this capacity. Laura will also serve on the Board of Directors.

Wellington Chapter
Gina Rascati and Joe Madej have also resigned as coordinators for the Wellington Tea Party. Joe did a Herculean job as the GOTV leader in Wellington, personally canvassing hundreds of homes despite hip and knee surgeries only months before. Joe was inspired by our recent visit by Brigitte Gabrielle and will be focusing on programs designed to understand radical Muslim issues in our country.

Marion Frank will be replacing Gina and Joe as the Wellington Chapter Coordinator and will also serve on the Board of Directors. Marion, like Laura, has been very active in the county, is on top of the issues, especially healthcare, and will be an energetic and valuable contributor to our organization.

Boca Raton Chapter
Alex Berry is stepping down as Chapter Coordinator in Boca Raton. In Alex’ words, “The most pressing reason for my departure is that I need to spend more time with my family, my businesses, and my church. I wanted to do all I can up until this past election, and I was as disappointed as could be with the results. I look forward to re-engaging in the future as time and opportunity allow.”

We would like to extend a special thanks to Alex for his hard work and commitment over the years!

Please Consider These Open Leadership Positions

Please contact Mel Grossman, our vice-chair, if you are interested in any of the following positions. His number is (561) 628-1873.

  • County Coordinator
  • Chapter Coordinator for Boca Raton (includes Delray Beach and Boynton Beach)
  • Assistant Coordinator for the Wellington Chapter

Yours in hope & action,

Pam Wohlschlegel
Co-founder & Oversight Coordinator
Palm Beach County Tea Party
Phone: 561.254.1036
pam@palmbeachcountyteaparty.org

Florida State Coordinator
Tea Party Patriots

The Counting Has Stopped, Our “Elected” Officials are Determined

We tea partiers, as fiscal conservatives, small government advocates, and free market supporters, have had a rough two weeks.  Now we need to recoup and determine where we go from here.  I just spent 4 days in Washington, DC with the national Tea Party Patriots.  We spent that time analyzing what has come to pass and brainstorming what needs to be done in the future.

What is very clear is that the liberals have been preparing for this November’s election for six years.  The fact is that they created offices and sophisticated social media systems around the country in 2006.  These offices and social media programs have not only been maintained but their effectiveness enhanced over the past 6 years — resulting in an almost total victory in 2012 at local, state, and federal levels!

My husband received an email from a friend this week that the tea party failed.  His insinuation was the tea party was responsible for the losses because we didn’t do enough. I vehemently disagree!  Maybe we didn’t do enough but many tea partiers put their lives on hold for the last two months, touching over 20,000 voters in Palm Beach County alone.  If you were one of those people, I thank you from the bottom of my heart!  You can take gratification in having given your best in working for change.  If you did not help with our Get out the Vote (GOTV) effort, I invite you to help us starting today to dig our way out of this mess!

We only have 23 months to turn things around in the November 1914 elections!  The opposition has droves of people looking to promote the big government/entitlement driven agenda.

What is our plan moving forward?  First, we are going to take a December break from our monthly meetings.  However, we do want to have an Action Planning Meeting on Tuesday, December 4th at 6:30 pm at the Palm Beach Gardens Library.  More information to follow.

We will continue to keep you updated on key issues that align with our three tenets of fiscal responsibility, limited government, and free markets.  The goal is that each and every one of us have key facts that we can spout when countering our liberal friends.  Remember, we want to calmly counter their emotion-charged rhetoric with solid indisputable facts!

To this end, here are a couple of interesting articles:

http://www.obamacaretruthsquad.com

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/nov/12/obamacare-taxes-mean-obamacare-layoffs/

One last thing, I cannot end this email without making a statement about the recent elections.  I solemnly believe that these election results were not the will of the majority of the people who live and work in South Florida!

 

COMPLETING WEST/MURPHY BALLOT RECOUNT — SUNDAY AT 8AM

Hello all,

The St. Lucie County Canvassing Board along with tens of observers has been recounting the rest of the early voting and absentee ballots in the West/Murphy congressional race since 9am this morning.  They have completed the count of all the machine readable ballots but still have several that must be manually read.  However, the board has chosen to close down for the night and will reconvene tomorrow morning, Sunday, at 8 am.

Tomorrow will hopefully be the last day of this journey!   We would love to have at least a balance of West and Murphy supporters so please come out to the Supervisor of Elections Office in Ft. Pierce at 8am or anytime soon thereafter.  Here is the information:

7th Rally and Finalization of Ballot Re-count at St. Lucie County Supervisor Board of Elections Office

Sunday, November 18th at 8 am

St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections
4132 Okeechobee Road
Ft. Pierce, FL  34947

(772) 462-1500

 

PLEASE COME AND BRING AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE!  AGAIN, THIS WILL BE AN HISTORIC MOMENT IN TIME!

 

**Share Your Thoughts/Experiences on Florida Voting** ———-

Lastly, **[click here](http://palmbeachcountyteaparty.org/2012/11/post-your-thoughts-what-is-wrong-with-our-election-process-in-florida/)** for an article on voting issues in Florida.  Please read the linked article and comment!  This is your chance to share your experiences and thoughts while they are fresh in your mind.  _This is particularly important if you were a poll worker or poll watcher._  Things need to change!

Determining where to shop and spend your money

I received this via email today.  Please read, comment, and share:

 

AMERICANS CAN NOW DETERMINE WHERE TO SHOP AND SPEND THEIR MONEY

Election Cycle political donations, as reported by the Center for Responsive Politics.

Shopping

Price Club/Costco donated $225K, 99% went to Democrats

Rite Aid donated $517K, 60% went to Democrats

Magla Products ( Stanley tools, Mr. Clean) donated $22K, 100% went to Democrats

Warnaco (undergarments) donated $55K, 73% went to Democrats

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia donated $153K, 99% went to Democrats

Estee Lauder donated $448K, 95% went to Democrats

Guess, Inc. Donated $145K, 98% went to Democrats

Calvin Klein donated $78K, 100% went to Democrats

Liz Claiborne, Inc. Donated $34K, 97% went to Democrats

Levi Straus donated $26K, 97% went to Democrats

Olan Mills donated $175K, 99% went to Democrats

WalMart donated $467K, 97% went to Republicans

K-Mart donated $524K, 86% went to Republicans

Home Depot donated $298K, 89% went to Republicans

Target donated $226K, 70% went to Republicans

Circuit City Stores donated $261K, 95% went to Republicans

3M Co. Donated $281K, 87% went to Republicans

Hallmark Cards donated $319K, 92% went to Republicans

Amway donated $391K, 100% Republicans

Kohler Co. (plumbing fixtures) donated $283K, 100% Republicans

B.F. Goodrich (tires) donated $215K, 97% went to Republicans

Proctor & Gamble donated $243K, 79% went to Republicans

Spirits

Southern Wine & Spirits donated $213K, 73% went to Democrats

Joseph E. Seagrams & Sons (incl. Beverage Business and considerable media interests) donated $2M+, 67% went to Democrats

Gallo Winery donated $337K, 95% went to Democrats

Coors & Budweiser donated $174K, 92% went to Republicans

Brown-Forman Corp. (Southern Comfort, Jack Daniels, Bushmills, Korbel Wines, Lenox China , Dansk and Gorham Silver) donated $644 K — 80% went to Republicans

Hungry?

Sonic Corporation donated $83K, 98% went to Democrats

Triarc Companies (Arby’s, T.J. Cinnamon’s, Pasta Connections) donated $112K, 96% went to Democrats

Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. (chicken) donated $366K, 100% went to Republicans

Outback Steakhouse donated $641K, 95% went to Republicans

Tricon Global Restaurants (KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell) donated $133K, 87% went to Republicans

Brinker International (Maggiano’s, Brinker Cafe, Chili’s, On the Border, Macaroni Grill, Crazymel’s, Corner Baker, EatZis) donated $242K, 83% went to Republicans

Waffle House donated $279K, 100% went to Republicans

McDonald’s Corp. Donated $197K, 86% went to Republicans

Darden Restaurants (Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Smokey Bones, Bahama Breeze) donated $121K, 89% went to Republicans

Heinz Republicans $64,000 Democrats $21,300! John Kerry’s wife’s company!!!

Traveling and/or dining

Hyatt Corporation donated $187K of which 80% went to Democrats

Marriott International $323K, 81% went to Republicans

Holiday Inns donated $38K, 71% went to Republicans

 

TOMORROW — FULL RECOUNT IN WEST/MURPHY CONGRESSIONAL RACE

Hello all,

This afternoon, a St. Lucie County judge deemed himself unable to rule on Congressman Allen West’s request for a full recount.   The judge essentially punted the decision back to the St. Lucie County Supervisory Canvassing Board.  Things looked pretty dismal when the board met this evening at 4pm and no decision was being communicated.

Then, some 5 hours later in a strange twist, honor and integrity prevailed . . .but only after someone found a box of several hundred uncounted ballots in a local high school gymnasium.  This resulted in a 2 to 1 vote by the Canvassing Board to recount the rest of the early voting and absentee ballots in the West/Murphy congressional race.

This is like a bizarre story line in a B-rated novel . . . but that is what we can expect from today’s progressives who do not know how to spell honor and integrity!

LET’S RALLY TOMORROW!  A FULL COURT PRESS!  ALL HANDS ON DECK FOR THE RECOUNT!  BE THERE FOR AN HISTORICAL MOMENT IN TIME!

6th Rally at Supervisor Board of Elections Office

Saturday, November 17th at 9 am

St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections
4132 Okeechobee Road
Ft. Pierce, FL  34947

(772) 462-1500

 

BE THERE AND BRING AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE!

 

**Share Your Thoughts/Experiences on Florida Voting** ———-

Lastly, **[click here](http://palmbeachcountyteaparty.org/2012/11/post-your-thoughts-what-is-wrong-with-our-election-process-in-florida/)** for an article on voting issues in Florida.  Please read the linked article and comment!  This is your chance to share your experiences and thoughts while they are fresh in your mind.  _This is particularly important if you were a poll worker or poll watcher._  Things need to change!

2nd Thursday Update on West/Murphy Race — Two Decisions Tomorrow

Two pivotal decision and two rallies tomorrow!

Hello all,

Yet again, things are changing by the hour in St. Lucie County.  As I said in my last post, a St. Lucie County circuit judge has scheduled a two-hour hearing for Friday on Republican U.S. Rep. Allen West’s request for a recount of all 37,379 ballots cast during early voting in St. Lucie County.

Then, a few hours later, the Supervisor of Elections for St. Lucie County, Gertrude Walker, will announce her decision with regard to recounting the ballots in this race.

As a result, here is our rally schedule for Friday, November 16th:

11 am  Rally at the St. Lucie County Courthouse will begin.

1  pm   The St. Lucie County Circuit Court judge will pass down his decision on the recount.

3 pm    Rally at the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections Office will begin.

4 pm    Gertrude Walker will announce her decision on the recount.

If one of these decisions results in a recount, we do not know when that recount will begin.  It is very important that we have as many people as possible at both of these rallies.  This will show our overwhelming support for voting integrity in St. Lucie County and Congressional District 18!

PLEASE COME TOMORROW and BRING YOUR FRIENDS!  Be a part of history!  If not us, who is going to do this?

Here are the locations:

4th Rally for Voting Integrity — Tomorrow, Friday, November 16th at 11 am

Judgement scheduled for 1pm.

St. Lucie County Courthouse
218 S 2nd St
Ft. Pierce, FL  34950

 

5th Rally at Supervisor Board of Elections Office at 3 pm

St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections
4132 Okeechobee Road
Ft. Pierce, FL  34947

(772) 462-1500

 

BE THERE AND BRING AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE!

 

Contact SOE’s

We are still asking everyone who cannot attend the rallies to call Gertrude Walker and demand “a fair recount so that the people are heard.”  Her number is 772-462-1500.  You may or may not get a chance to talk to someone or leave a message, but please try if you have a moment!

Also, please email the Florida Supervisor of Elections to express your concerns.  Here is the contact form:  [Contact Us at the Florida Division of Elections](http://election.dos.state.fl.us/contact-us/emailForm.shtml).  Select Elections/Voter Fraud.

Also, please email  any videos or pictures that you have taken or take tomorrow to info@palmbeachcountyteaparty.org

**Share Your Thoughts/Experiences on Florida Voting** ———-

Lastly, **[click here](http://palmbeachcountyteaparty.org/2012/11/post-your-thoughts-what-is-wrong-with-our-election-process-in-florida/)** for an article on voting issues in Florida.  Please read the linked article and comment!  This is your chance to share your experiences and thoughts while they are fresh in your mind.  _This is particularly important if you were a poll worker or poll watcher._  Things need to change!

Update: Judgement on Allen West Recount! Critical Rally Friday at 11am!

Critical Rally Tomorrow, Friday, at 11am!  Judge arrives at St. Lucie Courthouse for 1pm hearing!

Hello all,

Once again things are changing by the hour in St. Lucie County.  A St. Lucie County circuit judge has scheduled a two-hour hearing for Friday on Republican U.S. Rep. Allen West’s request for a recount of all 37,379 ballots cast during early voting in St. Lucie County.

Tomorrow, Friday, we are looking for our largest crowd to show our support for voting integrity!  Please join our hearty team as we let the judge know that we want voting integrity — that we want every vote to be counted and to be counted only once!  Take off work, travel far, do whatever you can to get there!  This is probably the most important thing you can do for your country and with your time!  If we do not take a stand on voter integrity, all will be lost!

PLEASE COME TOMORROW and BRING YOUR FRIENDS!  Be a part of history!  If not us, who is going to do this?

Here is the date, time, and location:

4th Rally for Voting Integrity — Tomorrow, Friday, November 16th

Rally starts at 11 am.  Judgement scheduled for 1pm.

St. Lucie County Courthouse

218 S 2nd St

Fort Pierce, FL 34950

BE THERE AND BRING AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE!

 

Contact SOE’s

We are still asking everyone who cannot attend the rallies to call Gertrude Walker and demand “a fair recount so that the people are heard.”  Her number is 772-462-1500.

Also, please email the Florida Supervisor of Elections to express your concerns.  Here is the contact form:  [Contact Us at the Florida Division of Elections](http://election.dos.state.fl.us/contact-us/emailForm.shtml).  Select Elections/Voter Fraud.

Also, please email  any videos or pictures that you have taken or take tomorrow to info@palmbeachcountyteaparty.org

**Share Your Thoughts/Experiences on Florida Voting** ———-

Lastly, **[click here](http://palmbeachcountyteaparty.org/2012/11/post-your-thoughts-what-is-wrong-with-our-election-process-in-florida/)** for an article on voting issues in Florida.  Please read the linked article and comment!  This is your chance to share your experiences and thoughts while they are fresh in your mind.  _This is particularly important if you were a poll worker or poll watcher._  Things need to change!

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