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Archive for Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Brownback says state is returning to feds $31.5 million health care reform grant

August 9, 2011, 1:36 p.m. Updated August 9, 2011, 5:53 p.m.

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Gov. Sam Brownback has been a vocal supporter of developing a healthcare exchange in Kansas. Until this week. On Tuesday, he directed Kansas to return the grant to the federal government. The video was shot at a June meeting of the Elephant Club in Johnson County.

— Gov. Sam Brownback on Tuesday rejected a $31.5 million grant from the federal government to implement a part of health care reform designed to allow Kansans to get the best insurance coverage possible.

In announcing the decision, Brownback, a Republican, said in a prepared statement, “There is much uncertainty surrounding the ability of the federal government to meet its already budgeted future spending obligations. Every state should be preparing for fewer federal resources, not more. To deal with that reality, Kansas needs to maintain maximum flexibility. That requires freeing Kansas from the strings attached to the Early Innovator Grant.”

Asked to elaborate on what federal requirements were attached to the grant, Brownback’s office did not respond.

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, also a Republican, who was administering the grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, said there were few strings attached.

“There are conditions with the grant that we were going to have to meet, but HHS has been incredibly flexible,” Praeger said.

“It’s a missed opportunity,” Praeger said of Brownback’s decision, “but I understand the politics.”

Republicans in Kansas and nationally are calling for repeal of President Barack Obama’s signature piece of legislation, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

At the American Legislative Exchange Council meeting last week in New Orleans, which key Kansas legislators attended, a topic of discussion was on ways legislators could return to their home states and take action to try to stop implementation of the law.

In ALEC’s “State Legislators Guide to Repealing ObamaCare” one of the strategies is for states to decline federal grant money that comes with “federal strings.”

Brownback, when he was in the U.S. Senate, voted against the legislation, and as governor has supported efforts to challenge it in court. However, he had earlier given his blessing to getting the grant.

On Tuesday, Praeger was brought into a conference call led by Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer, who said the state was opting out of the grant.

In February, HHS announced the award of seven agreements to states to help design and implement the information technology infrastructure needed to operate health insurance exchanges.

Kansas was one of the seven set to receive $31.5 million. At the time, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, and former Kansas governor, said, “Early innovator states will play a critical role in developing a consumer-friendly marketplace where insurers must compete to deliver the best deal. These grants ensure that consumers in every state will be able to easily navigate their way through health insurance options.”

In April, Oklahoma opted out of its grant. Now Kansas has followed.

Kansas Democrats criticized Brownback’s decision.

Democratic Party Chairwoman Joan Wagnon said, “Brownback showed he cared more about kowtowing to the extremists of his own political party than the people of Kansas.”

Senate Democratic Leader Anthony Hensley of Topeka said, “Over the years, I’ve heard conservative legislators consistently complain about unfunded mandates.

“Now, with a funded mandate available, Gov. Brownback has decided to opt out, forcing future funding to come from the state general fund. Kansas taxpayers can’t afford to pay for Gov. Brownback’s political grandstanding.”

House Republicans rallied to Brownback’s side.

House Speaker Mike O’Neal, R-Hutchinson, said, “With strings attached, an unknown ultimate price tag and an unworkable timeline, the ‘early innovator’ grant involves unreasonable risk. The governor made the right decision. We must continue to focus on health solutions that meet the needs of Kansans.”

Praeger lamented the loss of the grant. “We really had an opportunity to create a process that really worked well for us,” she said. Now, she continued, if the health reform law is upheld, the federal government will probably develop Kansas’ exchange. The loss of the grant funds could also impact efforts to improve the state’s Medicaid system, she said.

Praeger, a former state senator from Lawrence, said making affordable health care available shouldn’t be consumed in partisan politics. “It’s about doing the right thing,” she said.

Comments

tbaker 2 years, 8 months ago

Consider for a moment the law taking money from you that you worked for and earned, and giving it to someone else it doesn't belong to, and then test to see if the law permits you to do the same thing without committing a crime. This is called plunder folks, pure and simple. When someone objects to a thing being done by government, the liberal moon bats on this blog think they object to its being done at all. When we object to government-ran healthcare, the moon bats cry that we are opposed to people having any healthcare. They would claim we were opposed to people eating if we disapproved of government-ran farms. Nothing could be farther from the truth of course, but employing this intellectual fallacy is the only club they have left in the bag. The simple fact is the government could have done any number of things to achieve the healthcare goals we all want to see without spending a penny of tax money - and they chose not to. They chose plunder (Obamacare) instead, and I for one am glad the governor objects to it. People in Kansas have no more claim to that money than someone from Rhode Island does.

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nomansland 2 years, 8 months ago

^Hopefully, your sarcastic or just plain lunacy to think SB would even come within a million miles of winning the presidential election. Rick Perry stands a better chance than the crackpot governor you have in KS.

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sunny 2 years, 8 months ago

Go Sam! Run for President Please!

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verity 2 years, 8 months ago

I posted this above in a reply, but will post it again. The Kansas Democratic Party has a petition you can sign on their website with a place for sending Brownback a message. May not change anything, but at least he knows we are watching him and are aware of the things he is doing to destroy our state.

www.kansasdems.org

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Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 8 months ago

This is what you get from the Republican Terrorist governer. Are you proud of yourselves? Are you happy that money that was taken from we citizens at the point of a gun and then redistributed back has been returned by this incompetant idiot?? Does this make you glad? Are you eagerly awaiting the appearance of your governer on the Rush Limbaugh show??

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Lana Christie-Hayes 2 years, 8 months ago

made by your administration and your so called "faith based initiatives". Your policies are so far from being truly Christian in nature that it astounds and appalls me! In addition your administration continues to spen...d much of the taxpayers money to hire high dollar cronies that are totally unnecessary, while cutting services to the needy and most vulnerable of our great state. This latest "personal" decision, (and that's exactly what it is..personal) is just another one of your very selfish ways of so called governing. In my opinion, your actions seem more to be about your own agenda than by those you are suppose to serve. Being a Christian myself, I can only say, shame on you Mr. Brownback!!!

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Lana Christie-Hayes 2 years, 8 months ago

From Kansans against Brownback on facebook: Brownback did what?? | Kansas Democratic Party (scroll down a little on the page to get to the petition) www.kansasdems.org -- a link to a petition about the $31.5 million!.. also a place to give Browncrack a piece of your mind! Here is what I said: Mr. Brownback:.. This was a huge opportunity for the state of Kansas to help build from the ground up on the restructuring of health care. You, with no prior discussion, as usual, took it upon yourself to deny Kansans this opportunity in the name of your partisan political agenda. I am dismayed at this, as well as many other decisions made by ... cont ....

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jayhawxrok 2 years, 8 months ago

Brownback is a disgrace!

Uninsured Kansans die every day and this lunatic doesn't give one tinker's damn about them. I'm sure we can expect some lame voucher program that has no coverage, high premiums and enables the insurance co's to cancel coverage when a person gets sick.

This is an outrage, what a giant dolt you are, Brownback, just when I thought you couldn't get dumber than your lame squeaky voice pretending to be a stem cell, you go and sell out the people of this state with your every action.

JERK!

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blindrabbit 2 years, 8 months ago

As a progressive republican (they really do exist), I'd like to know what the rest of Kansas (outside Lawrence) now thinks about electing Smilin Sam. Hopefully, many Kansans who voted for him are beginning to see the light about this loon, but I have my doubts! Any evidence appreciated!

Sam was able to hide when he was in Washington; but now the bright light of truth is unveiling him.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 8 months ago

"There is much uncertainty surrounding the ability of the federal government to meet its already budgeted future spending obligations." This is a lie pure and simple!

It might be time to ask why people vote RINO as in Brownback,Cheney and the name Bush instead of republicans as in Nancy Kassebaum and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

This is the crap that Brownback has supported as an elected offical in Washington D.C.

20 years of this nonsense under Reagan/Bush.Bush/Quale and Bush/Cheney which Brownback brings to Kansas as his agenda:

  1. TABOR is Coming by Grover Norquist and Koch Bros sells out state governments http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2005/0705rebne.html

  2. The Reagan/Bush Savings and Loan Heist(Cost taxpayers $1.4 trillion) http://rationalrevolution0.tripod.com/war/bush_family_and_the_s.htm

  3. Wall Street Bank Fraud on Consumers under Bush/Cheney sent the economy out the window costing taxpayers many many trillions. http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2009/0709macewan.html

  4. 3 financial institutions were at risk so why $700 billion of bail out money? http://www.democracynow.org/2009/9/10/good_billions_after_bad_one_year

And that tax cuts do nothing to make an economy strong or produce jobs.

  1. Still A Bad Idea – Bush Tax Cuts - The ENTITLEMENT program for the wealthy at the expense of the middle class http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2001/0301miller.html

In the end big debt and super duper bailouts were the results which does not seem to bother Republicans, as long as they are in power.

In fact, by the time the second Bush left office, the national debt had grown to $12.1 trillion:

  • Over half of that amount had been created by Bush’s tax cuts for the very wealthy.

  • Another 30% of the national debt had been created by the tax cuts for the wealthy under Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

• Fully 81% of the national debt was created by just these three Republican Presidents. http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2010/0111orr.html

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Number_1_Grandma 2 years, 8 months ago

How's everyones change working for Kansan now that Rev. Sam Brownback is Governor? I'd say a 'hell-of-a-lot-worse'. Why do Kansans put up with this injustice? Kansas can't afford to wait four years to get rid of his behind.

I call for a recall election now.....

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jayhawklawrence 2 years, 8 months ago

For people who are frustrated that Brownback is not accessible, that he is shielded by his handlers and his right wing disciples, just look at his picture.

That thousand mile vacant stare says it all.

The guy is insane.

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Maracas 2 years, 8 months ago

He looked a gift horse in the mouth.

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blindrabbit 2 years, 8 months ago

luckygirl: Rightwing Kansans voted for Smilin Sam and should have known what his agenda is/was. Several books and articles provided the evidence if people would have taken the time to find out his true colors: Among them!

Rolling Stone 2005 article: "God's Senator: Who would Jesus Vote For!" Frank Thomas' book 2004, "What's the Matter With Kansas" Jeff Sharlet's book, "The Family", with chapter "God's Senator: Sam Brownback"

I'm a lifelong Rebub., but had the sense to not vote for him!

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BABBOY 2 years, 8 months ago

Brownie did not seem so nutty as a Senator.

But, he has lost his mind as Governor. The stupidity of cutting money for schools and giving back 31 million dollars speaks for itself.

I did not look at even one of the 200 plus posts, but anyone defending this action needs to have their head examined.

Good thing he will never be president. He would take us back to 1950....

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evilpenguin 2 years, 8 months ago

I wonder when Sam Brownback will actually start asking Kansans what they want, representing Kansas and doing his God damn job!

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luckysgirl 2 years, 8 months ago

Brownback is an idiot, and that's using polite language. Who voted for this bozo? Becoming the govenator has magnified behaviors that were there when he was a senator. He hasn't changed.

The picture says it all. Unbelievable!

He's doing some serious damage to Kansas and her citizens. I, for one, plan to actively campaign against him in the upcoming elections. I'd like to see him buried in a 'landslide' !

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Alexander Smith 2 years, 8 months ago

Once again a Republican has screwed us over. There are jobs and life blood being offered to the KS economy but because of ding bat Gov, we lost it. All to feed his ego at the sacrifice of benefit to the those who need it.

They need to strip all these politicians of their funds and let them live a the level of those who they want to cut programs and funds for. Make them see and suffer like they are.

Eitherway, the GOP is hosed in 2012. THey have accomplished nothing, ticked off the public for their stupidity on failing to raise taxes..but YET not cut anything that supports big business and the rich.

Enjoy your term Brownbeck.. your history in the next election as well as your GOP fruitcakes.

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Ray Parker 2 years, 8 months ago

No participation or cooperation whatsoever with the Marxist medical takeover in Kansas.

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blindrabbit 2 years, 8 months ago

Lead in photograph of Not-so-smilin-Sam doing his interpretational pose of John Steuart Curry's "John Brown". Problem is, unlike John Brown, Brownback does not give a damn about the less fortunate souls in Brownbackistan.

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autie 2 years, 8 months ago

That picture on the front page says it all. With his open hands and outstretched arms. I can't tell if he is thinking ,"Who? Me?" or if he thinks he's Jesus.

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Kim Murphree 2 years, 8 months ago

This man has no morals at all. Shame shame shame on you, Governor...and shame on all of you who voted him into office.

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heygary 2 years, 8 months ago

I found it despicable that Obamacare impacts did not kick in until after the 2012 elections ... I find it even more despicable that he is using more taxpayer money to attempt to secure a foothold so that the new congress and the Supreme Court can not easily dismantle his legacy project!

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whats_going_on 2 years, 8 months ago

call me unpatriotic, an a$$, whatever, but I really really dislike this state, and this country for that matter (or at least, most of the people in it and the way we seem to be headed). Good lord.

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Chris Golledge 2 years, 8 months ago

Principles...

Here's a principle for you:
How about, since we collectively agree that hospitals can't turn away people in need of treatment, that we also collectively agree to pay for it. Because without general health insurance coverage, those who choose not to buy, or can't afford, health insurance are getting a free ride from taxpayers and those who can afford insurance.

Someone is going to pay for it when someone get cancer or has a major accident; it might as well be a cost that is better distributed across the population.

"I believe the money was returned as part of the republicrat's efforts to see that the new healthcare plan fails." Yes, that should be obvious. Maybe the idea that, if Kansas accepts the money, he'll be at a disadvantage when saying that the plan is wrong, is one of the unnamed "strings".

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writeon 2 years, 8 months ago

Look at this picture, then think about the image of John Brown on the mural in the State Capitol Rotunda. Spooky.

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Cait McKnelly 2 years, 8 months ago

Anybody else notice how much Brownbat likes to affect the "crucifixion" pose in his photo ops?

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nugget 2 years, 8 months ago

No need to hold your arms out in the picture on the front page, Sam. You're not Jesus, although it's clear you think you are.

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bangaranggerg 2 years, 8 months ago

You know what I'd like: a politician who did care if people died because of their ambition, and then acted accordingly to what was best for the greater good. We don't have to see eye to eye on everything, just don't be the worst possible human being. If Obama is a democrat and Brownback is a republican, then I guess I'm not a republican anymore.

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Frightwig 2 years, 8 months ago

I understand Brownback's reluctance to commit to a questionable health plan that few people know much about. But the question must be asked, "What's your solution, Sam?" if Kansas is choosing to go rogue, I suggest that we take a look at Vermont's proposed single-payer plan. It, too, has some unanswered questions but it's more than any plan Sam has on the table.

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verity 2 years, 8 months ago

I got up this morning and very carefully composed a letter to Governor Brownback, trying to be as respectful as I could under the circumstances. Then when I went to the State of Kansas website to send the email, it wanted me to set up a special account. When I tried, it refused and said this might cost me $$.

Brownback's own site it still "Updates in Process." How long has that been going on?

Is there another way to email the governor? Snail mail takes too long and I want my message in writing.

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Centerville 2 years, 8 months ago

"designed to allow Kansans to get the best insurance coverage possible." Scott has really outdone himself with that one.

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jayhawklawrence 2 years, 8 months ago

Do you suppose Sam has signed a pledge with ALEC?

Pledges seem to be very popular with republicans these days.

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farr700 2 years, 8 months ago

Great job, Sam! I don't want money from a broke government. Nothing is free, and strings are certainly attached! Take it's handouts, and you will progressively depend upon a larger, more controlling government.

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jafs 2 years, 8 months ago

Another funny thought - one of the arguments/criticisms that the right often threw around about the health care reform bill was "If it's so great, why doesn't Congress have the same plan"?

Well, the fact is that Congress purchases their health insurance through exchanges just like this one.

And, yet,...

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usnsnp 2 years, 8 months ago

All that is happining is that the people of Kansas will get to pay more taxes when they do not have too. Bronback is banking on the health care law be defeated in the Supreme Court. So if it is not, it will mean the Kansas will have to pay for doing the work the 31 million dollars whould have done, and by then the work will probably cost 50 Million.

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jayhawxrok 2 years, 8 months ago

Brownback is a jerk - he cares nothing about Kansas or Kansans, we're just pawns in his little far right quest to turn the clock back 150 years or more. He'll give charity to big insurance co's and big pharms like a dutiful little Republican hell bent on corporate welfare at the expense of the citizenry.

He's a disaster.

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Gandalf 2 years, 8 months ago

I sure hope a democrat is elected governor after brownie. It will be fun to watch all the right wingers blame everything brownbutt has done on s/he!

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kernal 2 years, 8 months ago

Statements of various politicians as to why the grant was declined or why we should have taken it are a bit vague. What language in the grant is so objectional to KS Repubs?

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1983Hawk 2 years, 8 months ago

Interesting story about your relative, cheezit. Looks like the state is going to refuse to comply with a federal law we don't agree with, so no expertise is required. After all, a similar approach worked out real well for Arkansas in 1956.

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CHEEZIT 2 years, 8 months ago

A relative of mine works in the Insurance office of the state. One of her jobs since Barack developed the health care reform was to research the package. Isn't it like 1200- 1400 pages? Well she did that job and did it very well. She was asked to go on GMA but declined. She is frequently asked by major insurance companies to speak on the subject. Clearly she understands it better than most politicians including Mr. Brownback. Well today he found her position to be unnecessary and it was eliminated. She will be fine that is not the point. I guess my point is I didn't like the guy when he was elected, looked shady, and every day he proves my intuition correct!

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tomatogrower 2 years, 8 months ago

What a moron. Is he going to pay for poor Kansan's health costs? Is he going to require employees to offer health insurance? Will his "faith based" initiatives pay? Will the Kochs pay? No to all of the above, except the moron part. They just want the poor and invalid to go away and die, so they don't have to be bothered. Brownback is a good example of a faux Christian.

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Flap Doodle 2 years, 8 months ago

merrill, we all know how much you miss President Bush. He's been out of office for a couple of years now. At some point you just have to go on with your life.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 8 months ago

Brownback is ........

  1. Wall Street Bank Fraud on Consumers under Bush/Cheney sent the economy out the window costing taxpayers many many trillions. http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2009/0709macewan.html

  2. 3 financial institutions were at risk why $700 billion of bail out money? http://www.democracynow.org/2009/9/10/good_billions_after_bad_one_year

Tax cuts that do nothing to make an economy strong or produce jobs.

  1. Still A Bad Idea – Bush Tax Cuts - The ENTITLEMENT program for the wealthy at the expense of the middle class http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2001/0301miller.html

In the end big debt and super duper bailouts were the results which does not seem to bother Republicans, as long as they are in power.

In fact, by the time the second Bush left office, the national debt had grown to $12.1 trillion:

  • Over half of that amount had been created by Bush’s tax cuts for the very wealthy.

  • Another 30% of the national debt had been created by the tax cuts for the wealthy under Presidents Reagan and George H.W. Bush.

• Fully 81% of the national debt was created by just these three Republican Presidents. http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2010/0111orr.html

I'd say Brownback is bogus!

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gvnobas 2 years, 8 months ago

Socialist whine whine whine - yeah, we should be more like Taxachusetts or Commiefornia

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thuja 2 years, 8 months ago

Where can I get a "Dump Brownback" bumper sticker ?

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oneeye_wilbur 2 years, 8 months ago

If every one in Lawrence just gives $36.00 it will save the grant and the Coker's house. Talk to Mayor Cramwell. Protest and then protest the Democrat Sebilius who is repsonsible for the cutting of Heartland Grant, Sebilus is a Democrat or is she?

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1983Hawk 2 years, 8 months ago

An astonishing display of political self-aggrandizement in a hilariously transparent display to curry favor with Rick Perry and get on the ticket. Refusing $31.5 in federal money after closing an SRS office while citing a need to save 400k. What an abject disgrace!

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Daffy 2 years, 8 months ago

Obama can put this fiat money in his stash. A little flash money for his sweety's jet fuel.

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1983Hawk 2 years, 8 months ago

I'm sure all the pliant right-wing tools on here cheering brownie on for being so "principled" on fiscal matters were falling all over themselves volunteering to pay extra taxes while they were jingoistically waving their flags and cheering on both of Dubya's misplaced wars.

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Bob Forer 2 years, 8 months ago

Praeger, a former state senator from Lawrence, said making affordable health care available shouldn’t be consumed in partisan politics. “It’s about doing the right thing,” she said.

Good for you Sandy. Continue to stay above the fray and do the right thing. You are the only Republican I have ever voted for. You will continue to have my support.

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Scruggsy 2 years, 8 months ago

The fool loves power so much, I am really starting to think he is going to have Kansas secede from the union and become the Holy Kingdom of Brownbackistan...

I agree with the previous opinions that all he cares about is cultivating his image for a run at president. He couldn't care less about the lowly, unwashed mass of Kansas taxpayers and working class.

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antichristobserver 2 years, 8 months ago

3+ years till this idiot is history. Hope we still have a functioning state by then and not acting as part of WBC.

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Bob Forer 2 years, 8 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 8 months ago

http://pressreleases.kcstar.com/?q=node/64893

"Governor Brownback has proclaimed August 7 - 13 as Primary Care Safety Net Clinic Week. Wyandotte/Johnson Safety Net Coalition is pleased to promote Primary Care Safety Net Clinic Week 2011 as part of a weeklong campaign to raise awareness about the mission and accomplishments of Kansas clinics that provide a “safety net” for the most vulnerable Kansans – those who are uninsured and under-insured. "

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overthemoon 2 years, 8 months ago

The brief mention of ALEC deserves more attention. I hope Mr. Rothschild will examine the impact and control that group has on state and federal legislation...and what its costing us as the corporate members of the group craft bills that directly benefit their bottom line without regard to the wishes or best interests of American citizens.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 8 months ago

Sam Brownback the RINO has plans to unseat any republican that challenges his decisions. The same process RINO's used in D.C to remove a large number of republicans from the republican party.

Koch and Walton/Wal-Mart money will be available for the killing process. Speculation tells me new candidates have been approached. Who knows maybe some candidates will be imported?

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cowboy 2 years, 8 months ago

You have so little understanding of the issue you should request your own comment be removed ! If you're one of those pre existing folks like me you cannot go buy insurance , they turn you down . I have an easily controlled heartbeat issue , costs me about $2000 out of pocket a year to medicate and have a couple office visits and lab tests. I'd ask any "healthy" person to compare your actual costs . I wouldn't even hit the deductible on most of today's plans but I'm a high risk ? Now I can go in a high risk pool and pay out the a$$ for a relatively crappy policy. In 2014 the insurance companies are not going to be able to exclude us. That's why they want repeal. The exchange would be a great clearing house to be able to locate and get multiple quotes for a variety of programs. What is so wrong with that ?

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edjayhawk 2 years, 8 months ago

Every morning I get up and get on the LJW internet and can't wait to see what new stupid idea or thing the Governor will do.

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tange 2 years, 8 months ago

Sam does realize this is Kansas, right? Not SimKansas? Quick, get that virtual headgear off him, and pry that joystick from his hand!

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kuthruandthru 2 years, 8 months ago

I hope when the time for re-election comes everyone who has commented remembers these decisions and gives of their time, money, and energy to ensure we have...someone, anyone else.

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 8 months ago

I believe the money was returned as part of the republicrat's efforts to see that the new healthcare plan fails.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 8 months ago

Can a governor return these funds and decide not to participate in the program without consulting members of the Kansas legislature?

RINO's have little respect for laws,constitutions,bill of rights or our tax dollars.

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oooreally1234 2 years, 8 months ago

HEY BROWNBACK! I NEED health insurance! I work for a local business. Forty hours a week, full time! I can't get private insurance, it's too expensive. Does the GOP think I'm trying to mooch off the government by asking for some sort of government health care option that I'd gladly pay for?! There are so many of us out there who can't afford private insurance and it's not provided for us by our employers. I'd go get a job where that was the case, but employers are cutting costs by hiring more part time and less full time employees to avoid paying benefits. You can work hard and still be uninsured. I feel like the GOP villainizes those who ask for a government health care option on the basis that we're all looking for handouts.

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Bob_Keeshan 2 years, 8 months ago

Wasn't there a story on the front page of the paper this morning about federal funds?

Aren't those federal funds being thrown at "eco devo" opportunities and stolen from energy efficiency loans because there is a risk the feds will take the money back?

Interesting.

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edjayhawk 2 years, 8 months ago

Better pay attention to the Wisconsin returns tonight Governor. You could be next.

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rockchalk1977 2 years, 8 months ago

New research suggests that Obamacare comes with $50 billion in hidden annual costs, reports DailyCaller.com. The budget apparently doesn't take into account the insurance costs of spouses and children, meaning the Treasury could be tapped for hundreds of billions of dollars in the first decade the plan is instituted. “The Congressional Budget Office has never done a cost estimate of this because they were expressly told to do their modeling on single person coverage,” Richard Burkhauser told the Caller.

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skinny 2 years, 8 months ago

If you want health insurance go get a job that has health insurance or buy it. Everybody wanting something for nothing! Who do you think is going to pay for this so called FREE health insurance! Wake up people, the government is going broke because of knuckle heads like you all!

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not_holroyd 2 years, 8 months ago

Anyone entering a hospital just needs to get a "faith" mentor, just like the prisoners.

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Kim Murphree 2 years, 8 months ago

We are being sacrificed for Brownback's ambition to be President...he gave away $$$ that would have helped those who need it most. His term is going to continue to be miserable for most of us.

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jnixon 2 years, 8 months ago

Wonder what Sebelius is thinking right about now?

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SpicePirate 2 years, 8 months ago

I just don't get it!

Tasked with cutting state costs, that fool does THIS?! The health care reform law is just that... A FLIPPING LAW!!! He can't ignore it by POSTURING. Making himself out to be the humble servant that only wants to do right. He's done more WRONG in that vein than I can scarcely believe! Now, not only will we be stuck with whatever uniform model the feds come up with, we'll have to foot the entire cost of setting up this, REQUIRED, system.

I'm beginning to wonder if he actually wants to be martyred. Not a great thought, but it's anyone's guess just how far he can push the people of this state before SOMEbody responds in the wrong way. How is he not smart enough to see that threat? Or does he?

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Crazy_Larry 2 years, 8 months ago

Aw heck, let's just secede from the United States of America. What do ya think, Sham?

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deskboy04 2 years, 8 months ago

This is ridiculous. Who voted for him?

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bobberboy 2 years, 8 months ago

Tell me again - who voted this guy in ! ?

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grammaddy 2 years, 8 months ago

And he did this because Kansas has an over- abundance of medically insured people? I read today that health care costs are actually declining due to the Health Care Reform Act. Just another GOTP pinhead out to destroy any good Obama does.

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cowboy 2 years, 8 months ago

Will he return the upcoming drought subsidies ?

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Pastor_Bedtime 2 years, 8 months ago

Will Sam also be returning all the farm subsidies he and his family receives?

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cowboy 2 years, 8 months ago

Governors Office 300 SW 10th Ave # 212S Topeka, KS 66612-1504 (785) 296-3232

Call this sorry excuse for a governor and let him know how you feel .

Brownback needs to explain why he will not uphold the laws/acts of the United States by sabotaging the implementation of the Health Care Reform Act. He does not have the liberty to decide which laws to enforce or which acts to comply with based on his pinhead religious and economic illiteracy.

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Glenn Reed 2 years, 8 months ago

... ... ... Wow... my brain broke. I gotta get the pieces together before I respond... ... ... ... Okay... here I go...

We, as a state, are going to be doing something whether we like it or not. Right?

If we do it now, we get money to do it, and greater say on how. Right?

If we do it later, we have to pay for it, and we get no say on how. Right?

As far as the argument that it "helps" the federal government, it doesn't really. It'll benefit another state, because they'll get the money.

Our federal taxes will pay for another state to be an "early innovator."

So... we're giving back the money? ... ... ...

Gack, brain's broken. ><

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lawslady 2 years, 8 months ago

Frankie has it correct, in my opinion. EVERYTHING Sam does (EVERYTHING) is a move towards the White House. Period. He (perhaps correctly) read the winds years ago, and concluded that the Christian conservative movement was the wave that would carry him to that goal. Everything he does and has done and will do is not so much about personal beliefs, but rather about his desire to be President. Everything he does not do, or refuses to do, is based up what he thinks will best win over the voting block he believes will help him achieve that goal. Count on it.

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frankiej65 2 years, 8 months ago

Folks... can't you see it? Sam is running for President in 2016. He is not governing a state... he is building a foundation with which to support his platform. He is creating the perfect right-wing candidate. He will have a record of fiscal conservation, small government, and state independence of federal controls. He will have been a businessman, a Senator, and an executive. He will be able to separate himself from his years in congress, having held true to his promise to only serve two terms. He is Pro Life. He is evangelical. He is everything the Republican base wants in a candidate and if Obama serves two terms, he will serve as a perfect contrast. This is one cold calculating scary S.O.B. ... Remember he ran once.... do you really think he is not going to try again? His time in Topeka is about him... not about us.

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pineapple7 2 years, 8 months ago

This is despicable. I really don't know what to say.

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newmedia 2 years, 8 months ago

Looks like somebody just poked a stick in the eye of Obamacare.

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Richard Heckler 2 years, 8 months ago

This man turned away tax dollars coming back to to the taxpayers.

Brownback visions of turning Kansas government over to Private industry the most reliable source of fraud. He supports criminal activity.

Brownback,Koch family ,Wal-Mart family money want to privatize these state services and public schools.

While they despise paying taxes they love the thought of billions in tax dollars creating a nice profit margin for their wallets.

http://www.democracynow.org/2011/8/5/secretive_corporate_legislative_group_alec_holds

http://www.democracynow.org/2011/8/5/new_expos_tracks_alec_private_prison

Included in their process is reducing wages across the board = blue and white collars working for less pay while Walton's and Koch's increase their wealth.

How many here want to make less money for their hard labor?

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rodentgirl16 2 years, 8 months ago

I feel so fortunate to live in such a wealthy state that has the resources to turn down federal grant money due to the excess money we have in our state budget. We are really blessed! God Bless Sam too! Wait, I live in Kansas! Damn it! Never mind.

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Number_1_Grandma 2 years, 8 months ago

I would really like to know who voted for this jack*$$?

Any way to recall him from office before he kills Kansas?

God, really help us with Brownback in office....!

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kernal 2 years, 8 months ago

Hmmmm.

About the only comment I can come up with right now is those who are currently healthy best learn and practice how to stay that way! Those who are living a life style contributing to diabeties and cancer best get their gluteus maximus' up off the couch and in gear to start eating right, quit smoking and exercise because we are going back to the days when people are responsible for taking care of themselves.

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think_about_it 2 years, 8 months ago

Unprincipled people do not understand why the governor returned this money. Normal Kansans do. Thanks Sam.

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guesswho 2 years, 8 months ago

I doubt this money will be returned to the taxpayers; other states will probably be eligible for it so it does not save money!

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Brock Masters 2 years, 8 months ago

Let me offer a different point of view. Whether it is a good use of federal dollars, states have accepted those dollars because the other states were accepting them and no one didn't want to not get their "fair share" of the free money.

This attitude allowed the federal government to continue spending money they did not have. I don't know all the details, but perhaps instead of criticizing KS for not taking these dollars, maybe we should applaud our state for not being one of the hogs at the federal trough and having the courage to say no to the "free" money.

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Bob Forer 2 years, 8 months ago

OMG, what a fool for a governor.

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Joe Hyde 2 years, 8 months ago

Did he run this plan past the full Legislature before ordering the federal money returned? No. This is yet another autocratic decree more befitting a Third World dictator, another financial mortification inflicted on us by St. Sam the Pious.

Come November 2012 I may bear down so hard putting my X into the boxes for Democrat candidates that I'll snap the pencil.

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jfhoosier 2 years, 8 months ago

So in the last week, the state has refused to apply for federal health improvement program dollars and also returned millions of healthcare dollars. WOW!!! Way to look out for the people.

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2 years, 8 months ago

@Scott Rothchild.

From the article, "That requires freeing Kansas from the strings attached to the Early Innovator Grant..."

Even though it's a moot point, what were those strings? I use the past tense because the grant will never return.

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2 years, 8 months ago

Stunned. $31.5 mil grant is essentially a gimme. So what if there are some "strings attached to the Early Innovator Grant." If he were still our Senator who's not a Senator he would push for the funds.

This utterly incomprehensible move is base solely in political and religious ideology. The Gov has absolutely no desire to help Kansans. More lost jobs, more people actually hurt, more people will probably die.

Is it because he couldn't find an out-of-state crony to import at a high salary to (mis)-manage the funds? Or, is it because that's what Rick Perry told him to do? (Remember, "The Gov" said he wants to make Kansas more like Texas.)

Another example of, "It's good to be The Gov."

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Katara 2 years, 8 months ago

So Brownback wants to give up the chance to be part of the development of healthcare reform?

How very short-sighted!

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autie 2 years, 8 months ago

Just when you think it can't get any more stupid. Jeebus. There's 31.5 million dollars that could have been spent in Kansas supporting new jobs and work and commerce...you know, that stuff that drives an economy. What a dip.

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WilburM 2 years, 8 months ago

As the KS Health Institute pointed out yesterday, there is a trend here, with KS either returning $$ or not applying for Federal $$. Isn't there anyone in state government witty enough to figure out how to use these funds to the benefit of Kansas citizens? These decisions seem ideologically driven, rather than well considered. And we get fewer jobs and fewer services. But we are pure.

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Keith Richards 2 years, 8 months ago

I trust KS to do a better job wasting the money than the Federal govt.

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madcow 2 years, 8 months ago

How many jobs will not be created due to returning that money?

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Hooligan_016 2 years, 8 months ago

I really do not know what to say in response to this ...

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