Do Republicans Really Want to Support Hillary Care?/
Universal Health Care
Under the Cigarette tax bill, families with incomes of $55,125 will have access to insurance under ARKids First Medicaid program. 1 That income is $17,000 higher than median annual income in Arkansas. 2 See long list of 16 benefits in red font below – better benefits than most of you have!
Liberals and conservatives alike have labeled ARKids the cornerstone of an agenda pushed by an advocacy group founded by Hillary Clinton. 3
Arkansas DHS Tom Dalton stated at the inception of the ARKids program, "This program will put us in a very small group of states that virtually provides a kind of universal coverage for children. Few states will cover children up to 200 % of the poverty level. I don't know of any in the South." 4
Private insurance is covering 55,000 fewer children than in 2000. 5
Can't we get some Republicans on board to oppose the necessary Appropriation bill to expand this ARKids program?
According to the Democrat Gazette, Republicans are not opposing the expansion. 6
And according to an article in the Jonesboro Sun, "The intense focus [on children's insurance] is driven by Democrats' effort to incrementally expand access to health insurance. " 7
I believe the majority of Arkansans would disagree with giving free (or with minimum co-pay) insurance to families making $17,000 higher than the median annual income in Arkansas.
As of Sunday, Feb. 16, 09 "The bill to change the ARKids eligibility from 200 percent of the federal poverty limit to 250 percent has yet to be filed, said Department of Human Services spokesman Julie Munsell." 8
ARKids is the state version of SCHIP. President Bush vetoed the expansion of SCHIP, October 2007, because the expansion was too great. It also was to be financed with cigarette tax. Every Republican candidate in 2008 agreed with Bush on the veto. 9
ARKIDS First Medicaid insurance is one of the health programs to be expanded under the cigarette tax. The present eligibility requirement allows family up to 200% of federal poverty level to receive benefits, which is $42,4000 for a family of four. Governor Beebe's plan using the cigarette tax increase would expand the income level to 250% of poverty level (or $55,125 annual income). An income of $55,125 is approximately $17,000 higher than median annual income in Arkansas) 6
There is a push in Arkansas to fund ARKIDS at 300% by Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families (this is the organization founded by Hillary Clinton and one of the main liberal groups who threatened suit against the implementation of the ban on homosexuals the state adopted as a result of a ballot initiative). 7 This would essentially be universal health care for children and a major step toward universal health care for the nation. And what would that do to private insurance companies and the economy?
And what will that do to health care in our nation. When a doctor of one large group in our city was asked what Obama's looming health care plan will do to our medical care, he responded that we are already suffering the consequences. He said the number of internal medicine doctors and general practitioners in their group had already dropped from nine to three doctors. He said if he were to die, it would take at least a year to replace him in the group. What will it be like when health care becomes universal?
ARKids coverage includes the following according to ARKids pamphlets given out in school systems. Do your children have health coverage this good? And if so, at what cost?
Physician Office Visit
Laboratory and /x-ray
Durable Medical Equipment
Outpatient Mental and Behavioral Health
Nurse Midwife and Nurse Practitioner
Advocacy group for ARKIDS founded by Hillary Clinton. http://www.wic.org/bio/hclinton.htm
4. Dalton quote taken from AR Democrat Gazette, "Plan would bridge gap in health-care system, Feb 9, 1997.
6. Article leaves impression no Republicans oppose this expansion. http://www.nwanews.com/adg/National/252385/
7. "Health insurance for children is feel-good issue for Congress", Jonesboro Sun March 28, 1997