Governor Beebe and some of the Democratic Arkansas state legislators are acting like Washington Democrats on the Obama health care bill as reflected in the vote in the Public Health Committee on HB1053. All five Republicans on the 20 member committee voted FOR and 13 Democrats voted AGAINST a bill that would "reject a key portion of the federal health care overhaul."
Governor Beebe and Other Democrats Cast a Vote For the Obama Health Care Bill
(See Beebe's Quote on the Bill in Red Font Below)
An Associated Press article described the vote this way. "A legislative committee has blocked an attempt to reject a key portion of the federal health care overhaul. The House Public Health, Welfare and Labor Committee on Tuesday voted down a proposal by Republican Rep. David Meeks of Conway that would ban any law requiring Arkansans to buy health insurance."
The US House has just voted to repeal the Obama Health Care bill. One would think after the 2010 election and the defeat of Senator Lincoln that Democrats would have learned their lesson and would represent their constituents. But not so. There are 20 members on the committee and only 2 of the Democrats voted for the bill. That means 13 Democrats voted against the bill. Their vote in my opinion is a vote for Obama care.
Further, there are 44% of the Representatives in the Arkansas House, and this committee only has 25% Republicans on it. In other words the committee is stacked. Some very important bills are evidently going to be coming through that committee, and the deck was stacked so the 15 Democrats (to 5 Republicans) could block them. Sounds just like Washington to me. A Democrat on the committee made a motion to limit the time of the debate on this HB1053. Of course with 15 Democrats on the Committee, how did the Republicans have a chance of voting down the motion? Several people were there to testify but didn't get to because of the time limit.
Evidently the Democrats followed the leadership of their Party leader, Governor Mike Beebe. Beebe is quoted as saying,
"Beebe told reporters afterward that he was glad the House Public Health Welfare and Labor Committee rejected House Bill 1053 by Rep. David Meeks, R-Conway, which was aimed at blocking the federal provision in the health-care overhaul that mandates people buy private health insurance. Passing a bill to defy the federal government is unconstitutional,” Beebe said. '“It would get us in a lawsuit. I applaud what the committee did.'” http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2011/jan/27/beebe-hopes-his-mark-swagger-state-20110127/?subscriber-arkansas
If the truth doesn't work, liberals can always introduce the fear tactic. An assistant Attorney General and the state surgeon general spoke against the bill, evidently with the Governor's blessing, saying that it would all but guarantee that the state would be sued. I wonder what would cost more, the millions of dollars Obama's healthcare bill is going to cost Arkansas or the result of a possible lawsuit fighting that bill. And shouldn't Arkansas leaders do the right thing rather than basing their decisions on fear.
While our Governor and his Democratic friends are scaring Arkansans with a law suit, 26 other states have brought lawsuits against the Obama health care bill, and several states have passed laws similar to this HB1053. This one vote on HB1053 has already caused at least one person to announce plans to oppose one of the legislators voting against it.
Maybe Arkansas will find themselves in the same position as the Washington Democrats in the next election. If we can defeat as many Democrats in Arkansas in the next election as in 2010, we may see the state of Arkansas wrenched from the hands of the liberals as has happened in some Southern states that are now representing the people rather than the liberals. In this area, even Mississippi is ahead of Arkansas.
"In the poll, 65 percent of respondents said they did not think the new health care reform law will expand and improve the quality of health care...A majority of those polled, 64 percent also said they opposed U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln’s vote in favor of the Senate version of the Health care Reform Bill."
We need leadership that will reflect the wishes of the people. "They [Arkansans] didn’t like it before (Congress) passed it, they didn’t like it when it passed and they haven’t changed their mind about (U.S. Sen.) Blanche Lincoln voting for it,” said J. Brad Coker, managing partner of Washington-D.C.-based Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. " Poll: Arkansans remain unhappy with health care overhaul" http://arkansasnews.com/2010/09/19/poll-arkansans-remain-unhappy-with-health-care-overhaul-2/ Arkansas New Bureau
I want to thank these five Republicans and two Democrats for voting for this bill. I especially thank these two Democrats for having the courage to stand against their own party. I called the clerk in Little Rock of this committee to make sure I had the committee votes right on this bill.
Voting For the Bill
Woods, Jon (R-93) - Vice Chair YES
Mayberry, Andy (R-27) - Member YES
Lea, Andrea (R-68) - Member YES
Malone, Stephanie (R-64) - Member YES
King, Bryan B. (R-91) - Member YES
Lampkin, Sheilla E. (D-10) - Member NO
Wardlaw, Jeff (D-8) - Member YES
These are the Democrats who voted against the bill:
Tyler, Linda S. (D-45) - Chair NO
Word, James L. (D-16) - Member NO
Gaskill, Billy (D-78) - Member NO
Hall, Clark (D-13)
- Member NO
Hyde, Barry (D-40) - Member NO
Leding, Greg (D-92) - Member NO
Lovell, Buddy (D-56) - Member NO
Pennartz, Tracy (D-65) - Member NO
Perry, Mark (D-44) - Member NO
Smith, Garry L. (D-7) - Member NO
Wagner, Charolette (D-77) - Member NO
Wilkins, Butch (D-74) - Member NO
Allen, Fred (D-33) - Member NO