The Height of Hypocrisy: Paralyzed Arkansas Legislator Sponsored Self-Serving Changes to Medicaid Law in His State While Voting Against Medicaid Expansion for the Needy

JoshMillerArkansasSubmitted by Elaine Magliaro, Weekend Contributor

Last week, I wrote a post about Josh Miller (Not All Needy People Are As Deserving As Others), a young Republican state legislator from Heber Springs, Arkansas. Miller, who was paralyzed more than a decade ago in a catastrophic car accident, has been able to live a productive life due to the medical benefits he has received from both Medicare and Medicaid. Yet, this young state senator has spoken out against Medicaid expansion in Arkansas. Some of us find his stance on this issue to be hypocritical.

This past Tuesday, lawmakers in Arkansas voted to continue allowing the state “to use Medicaid dollars to buy private health-care insurance for poorer residents, overcoming resistance from some Republicans who said the program amounted to an endorsement of the Affordable Care Act.” According to the Wall Street Journal, Arkansas became the first state “to offer a ‘private option’ to extend coverage to lower-income residents…” Supporters of the program saw the private option “as a way to accept federal dollars and cut the number of uninsured residents without enlarging Medicaid.”

Matt Campbell of Blue Hog Report said that when he heard about the legislature’s vote to fund the private option for another fiscal year he “halfheartedly hoped that the extra ‘yes’ vote might have been Rep. Josh Miller.” Such was not the case however. What Campbell said he finds most hypocritical and troubling about Miller’s “no” vote on the private option is that the young lawmaker actually used his position as a legislator “to make blatantly self-serving changes to the Medicaid law” which would make it easier for him to get the same coverage that he “would deny to others.” Campbell says that Miller was a main sponsor in 2013 of Act 1048. That Act changes how Arkansas law defines a person’s eligibility for receiving Medicaid.

Eligibility prior to ACT 1048:

an individual who meets the disability assets and unearned income standards to receive supplemental security income, who would be considered to be receiving supplemental security income benefits but for his or her earned income, and whose net combined family income is less than two hundred fifty percent (250%) of the federal poverty guideline. Miller’s bill eligibility change:

How Miller’s bill would change eligibility:

an individual who meets the disability assets and unearned income standards to receive supplemental security income, who would be considered to be receiving supplemental security income benefits but for his or her earned income, and whose net combined family income is less than two hundred fifty percent (250%) of the federal poverty guideline.

Campbell claimed that “while lawmakers and policy wonks were arguing over the propriety of expanding Medicaid in general to include non-disabled adults making up to 138% of the federal poverty line, Rep. Miller was working to ensure that, no matter how much money he might make, he could never lose his sweet, sweet government-funded insurance.” Campbell said that Miller didn’t stop at that, though. He said that Act 1048 also changes “Arkansas Code Annotated 20-77-1204 regarding the administration of Medicaid for ‘Low-Income Disabled Working Persons.’”  He said Miller’s bill also added 1204(c), which states:

A rule adopted under this section shall not include a test for income, assets, or resources.

Campbell added that while 1204(b)(2) “explicitly requires DHS to adopt rules that establish ‘premium and cost-sharing charges on a sliding scale based on income’… thanks to Rep. Miller, DHS cannot actually include any kind of means testing in those rules…”

It certainly does appear that Josh Miller thinks that not all needy people in Arkansas are as deserving of Medicaid benefits as is he. It appears that he  truly is a hypocrite too.

~ Submitted by Elaine Magliaro

The views expressed in this posting are the author’s alone and not those of the blog, the host, or other weekend bloggers. As an open forum, weekend bloggers post independently without pre-approval or review. Content and any displays or art are solely their decision and responsibility.

SOURCES

The Disgustingly Self-Serving Hypocrisy of Rep. Josh Miller (Blue Hog Report)

Arkansas Lawmakers Pass ‘Private Option’ Health-Care Law: Program Allows State to Use Medicaid Dollars to Buy Private Health-care Insurance for Some (Wall Street Journal)

Not All Needy People Are As Deserving As Others: Paralyzed Arkansas Lawmaker Who Receives Medicaid Benefits Opposes Medicaid Expansion in His State (Res Ipsa Loquitor)

179 thoughts on “The Height of Hypocrisy: Paralyzed Arkansas Legislator Sponsored Self-Serving Changes to Medicaid Law in His State While Voting Against Medicaid Expansion for the Needy”

  1. nick:

    How many books has Hannity authored? At least one more than most of the “educated” people who post on this blog. Probably a NYT best seller too, not many “educated” people can say that, most of those books are lucky to sell a few hundred copies.

    Harold Laski’s book on Marx is one I am reading now which probably didnt sell more than 100 copies and those to close friends.

    He is uneducated and wealthy so he must have something on the ball. He was spared the brain destroying experience of a liberal arts education.

    Funny how many at high levels of our government received a liberal arts education from an Ivy League college. Is it just coincidence our government is screwed up? I think not, too much nuance and not enough straight thinking.

    Thank god Jobs and Gates dropped out of college before they could learn that nuance “thinking”.

  2. Homophone, “Homo” is considered non sensitive to the PCers. That’s why you need to use “Gay.” In a few years textbooks, reference books, etc. will be using Gayphone as the proper word. That is if PC[political correctness] is not squashed.

  3. Justin, To understand how some old timers react to you, understanding the history here is key. My suggestion is that you read some of the archives in 2012/13. Find some very long threads[200 comments or more]. There you will see some REAL hate mongering, epithets, vile behavior. The cast of characters will become apparent. Many of the more, let’s say “passionate” people, have left. Read the Jan 2014 comments leading up to the civility rule. Now, there is GREAT resentment from a few who remain that their allies left, were suspended, banned, no one knows for certain. But, it’s neither here nor there because it’s none of our business. All that really matters is they’re gone.

    Some have had a hard time adjusting. Those are the folks who loved the old days. So, you are feeling resentment from the old timers still here. You see Justin, some of the folks who are gone now would have run you outta here pronto!! Maybe not, you seem pretty strong and calm. But believe me, someone like yourself would have caused a shitstorm. You’re getting some condescension, some passive aggressive stuff, but everything is relative. Compared to just a couple months ago you’re getting kid glove treatment. As I said, you are GREAT for this blog. You don’t make things personal, you state your views succinctly, and you’re civil. There were some really longwinded, condescending, sanctimonious, hate-mongers here This was a very liberal blog commentary contingent. That has changed to a more balanced roster of commenters. I don’t want to rehash the dark days here but it is important for your perspective.

    I will not remark about Annie. Just form you’re own opinion. You are savvy enough to figure her out yourself. Everyone does.

    Finally, if you want to see some REAL hate mongering go to amazon books and look @ reviews from “Mary” on my wife’s 2 books, Taken For Granted and Taken by Surprise. Her name is Leslyn Amthor Spinelli. There is some hate! And, the person’s real name is not Mary. But, the hater knows that is the name of my deceased sister. so, she gets my whole family into her deranged and vile comment.

  4. Elaine M. may not be a hate-monger, but one thing is for sure. She needs to extend the respect to anyone who disagrees with that they deserve as a human being.

  5. So you’re not a good thing. I read here today that you were talking about stalking. You need fresh underware? I read that too.

  6. And Mr. Homophone, some PC may be offended by your moniker. May I suggest Gayphone, or Alternativelifestylephone. I would keep Homophone but you might offend some folk here.

Comments are closed.