Beebe Gains Approval for His Plan To Make Arkansas A "Model" for Obamacare

(Beebe's email & phone number at end of email)

In early March Arkansas became aware of a letter of application  that Governor Mike Beebe wrote to Kathleen Sebelius, the "Queen of Health Care" to make Arkansas a model for the rest of the nation for Obamacare. Now the federal government has given preliminary approval to Beebe's "proposal to restructure payments to doctors, hospitals and other health providers for treating its mostly poor and disabled recipients." (Dem Gazette,  "U.S. gives Beebe's plan to overhaul Medicaid green light, May 3, 2011.

Was there any doubt that Beebe's  proposal would be accepted?  Does anyone really think that Beebe and Arkansans came up with this plan outlined in his letter to Sebelius?  We know how these things are done.  Obama and his crowd came up with the idea and then got some governor to pilot it; that is the way it works so naturally Washington was going to approve it.

Following are some quotes from Beebe's letter to Sebelius with comments in brackets.  Beebe' team denied his plan outlined in his letter to Sebelius was an attempt to implement Obamacare.  The information and comments below were written to prove that the letter is indeed volunteering Arkansas as a model for Obamacare.  Governor Beebe's entire letter to Sebelius can be read at this link.  .'s+Obamacare.pdf 

"The Honorable Kathleen Sebelius

Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

330 Independence Avenue, S. S., Room 4257

Washington, DC 20201


"Dear Madam Secretary:


         "Arkansas is pleased to submit the enclosed proposal to develop a new payment

system for its Medicaid program, one that will promote coordinated, evidence-based care

while bending the cost curve.  We believe that a public-private collaborative planning

process will produce an effective new framework for organizing health services in

preparation for implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). [ACA is Obama health

care program]


         " Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arkansas has expressed to me an interest in

participating in the development of this new payment system, while, of course, reserving

all decisions regarding it use of such a system, in whole or in part, until the particulars of

the system are clear.  I welcome their interest and will invite other insurers to participate,

as well.  Given the widespread challenges in sustaining local Medicaid programs, our

statewide efforts could provide CMS with experience to guide nationwide efforts in

health-care  reform..  [Note: CMS means  US federal agency which administers Medicare,

Medicaid, and the Children's Health Insurance Program and Beebe is offering to be the

model -  "guide" - for nationwide efforts in health care reform.]


"We have not had a chance to fully consider all the possible connections between Section

1332 of the ACA and our proposal. - [Note the reference again to ACA which is the acronym

 for Obamacare legislation]


"Active participation in the proposal described below can provide CMS, in its dual capacity

as the chief steward of, and senior partner in, Medicare and Medicaid, with critical lessons,

both as to solution and process that can be shared with other states as the nation continues

to prepare for implementation of the Affordable Care Act [Affordable Care Act is the name

of Obamacare legislation. Note Beebe says what Arkansas learns can be shared with other

states as the nation prepares to implement Obamacare.  Medicaid and Medicare is probably

about 3 /4 of Obama's health care plan. Quotes from other papers.  In Arkansas  63% of all

births are paid for with Medicaid,  and Beebe plans to increase the funds for Medicaid even

more.   " In the forthcoming fiscal year, Beebe has proposed about $692 million for Arkansas'

portion of Medicaid - a figure expected to meet state needs. But in FY 2013, which begins

 July 1, 2012, Beebe has built in an additional $174.3 million for Medicaid growth, which will

raise program expenses to $865.9 million."  This is evidently the increase that the state has

been saying would result because of Obamacare.  Instead of resisting it Beebe jumps in to be

a model for it. ] 


"The new system prices would be built on the following assumptions:

Under the Affordable Care Act [short name for Obama Health Care bill], no episode of care will be limited in scope solely because a

 patient is unable to afford all of the critical diagnostic and treatment elements of care."

[just  one of the assumptions.]


Definition of  Affordable Care Act:  The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA)

 is a federal statute that was signed into United States law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010.

Legislature Rejected Beebe's bill to Implement Obamacare in 2011 Legislative Session

The legislature, reflecting the concerns of Arkansans,  fought back HB2138 that would have allowed Arkansas " to begin setting up its own health-insurance exchange under the federal health-care law." House Republicans were able to keep this Beebe health care bill from passing in Arkansas by holding up the$72.6 million appropriation bill (HB1226)  for the state insurance department until HB2138 was withdrawn and put in interim study.  $1 million of the $72.6 million was to be used  to plan and develop a state health insurance exchange under the federal health-care law. The  Republican minority of the House was able to block the legislation funding for the insurance department since Arkansas requires a 75 percent majority to pass most appropriation bills.  There are now 45 Republicans in a 100 member House.

According to the Democrat Gazette today  in regard to HB2138 that failed in the Legislature this year, "Gov. Mike Beebe said Tuesday that he has the option to use an executive order to set up the state’s health insurance exchange over the Legislature’s objections, but he’s not going to take it...Beebe said he will stick with the Legislature’s choice. The Legislature had a chance to do this.  I think it's the right thing to do.  They're the public-policy folks."

I applaud Governor Beebe for this decision to not use an executive order to implement HB2138,  but I adamantly believe that Beebe should refrain from volunteering Arkansas as a   "model" for Obamacare Medicaid as outlined in his letter above to Sebelius without approval of the Legislature and the people. Beebe's plan in his letter is in effect an executive order since the legislature had no input into it and would have turned it down just as they did HB2138 had they had a vote because they understand they would have to in order to be re-elected.   Why would Beebe be inclined to want the Legislature's approval on HB2138 and believe there was no need to get their approval on his plan outlined in his letter to Sebelius?   Could the difference be that his letter to Sebelius was leaked and was never intended  to  be exposed to the public and could be done in secret?

Gov. Mike Beebe has to know how Arkansans feel about Obmacare when a greater percentage of Arkansans voted against Barack Obama than any state in the union;  Senator Blanche Lincoln lost big time after being the key vote for the Health care bill; the legislature rejected his Health care HB2138; and the US House voted to repeal Obamacare, and  But Beebe is acting like Obama and the Washington Democrats by ignoring the voice and desire of the people. Beebe is not looking at another election, but members of the Legislature are,  "Twenty-eight states have filed or signed onto lawsuits challenging the measure. Thirty-eight legislatures are considering state laws to curtail its effects, " yet our Governor is volunteering us to be a model for it.

Posted May 5, 2011

Women Action Group