Friday, February 25, 2011

Hostage-Taking

My heart is aching this morning.

I awoke to the news that the Wisconsin Assembly had passed the "budget repair" bill, unamended, in a sudden rush vote after midnight last night. They ran the roll-call so quickly that not all legislators even had the chance to push their button to register a vote.

Then I saw this article in Madison's Capital Times:
Walker warns Medicaid payments to nursing homes could be delayed if bill not passed

Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin is now holding senior Medicaid recipients hostage over the passage of a bill (which can no longer be amended -- the struggle is now to scrap it altogether) that would turn future decisions on Medicaid over to his own appointee Dennis Smith, who has taken positions hostile to Medicaid. His aim is to force the return of Democratic Senators who have left the state, to complete the forcing of this bill upon the state of Wisconsin.

This is wrong. This is so very wrong.


P.S. As pointed out by Suze in the comments, there's an inspiring and heartbreaking Capital Times story online today:
Disability rights activists stage protest inside state GOP headquarters

6 comments:

telemommie said...

Watching all this from Texas (which is not a "disability" or "education" friendly state by a long shot) I am aghast. My prayers go out to you and your fellow Wisconsonites.

Suze said...

This one broke my heart:
http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/health_med_fit/vital_signs/article_29898a84-413e-11e0-bada-001cc4c002e0.html
Thanks for fighting the good fight. I will be there today.

JoyMama said...

telemommie -- thanks so much. There are quite a few of us here who have been following how Texas' machinations as a low-tax, low-services state have not succeeded in keeping the state out of budget difficulties, but meanwhile have decimated your services and safety net. Thank you for your prayers; mine are with you as well.

JoyMama said...

Suze -- I saw the headline earlier, but only now have had a chance to read it. I met the woman who said "It is about our lives!", at the press conference last Sunday. She's an amazing woman.

I'll link to the article in the text and on my WI Budget 2011: Medicaid page.

MK Chang said...

As an educator, I think of all the kids from low-income families who depend on Medicaid to stay healthy. As you said, this is so wrong! The more I learn about Walker's budget bill and his plans for Wisconsin, the more sad I feel. It is so wrong. Why do some people not see it?

JoyMama said...

MK Chang - thanks for joining the conversation over here! Of the many, many things that are devastating about the budget bill, Medicaid continues to loom largest to me, even though it's the union struggle that continues to pull most of the people into the street. I fear a "deal" that tries to placate the union folks just enough to get them/us to back off the protesting, while the Medicaid assault moves right through, along with the education cuts.