Archive for Thursday, August 25, 2011

Kansas gets more “Obamacare” funds despite Brownback’s opposition to the law

August 25, 2011


— Kansas is getting more "Obamacare" money despite Gov. Sam Brownback's opposition to the law.

The state received $3.2 million from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as part of $137 million awarded to nearly every state, it was announced Thursday.

Of Kansas' share, $3.1 million is to strengthen public health immunization and nearly $100,000 was for a tobacco cessation services.

"More than ever, it is important to help states fight disease and protect public health," said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a former governor of Kansas.

"These awards are an important investment and will enable states and communities to help Americans quit smoking, get immunized and prevent disease and illness before they start," she said.

Sebelius said most of the funds awarded came from the Prevention and Public Health Fund that was created by Affordable Care Act.

Recently, Brownback, a Republican who opposed the Affordable Care Act as a senator and wants it repealed, rejected a $31.5 million grant from HHS to implement in Kansas a health insurance exchange that is part of the Act. The exchange is aimed at helping people purchase insurance.

In rejecting the grant, Brownback said there were too many strings attached and he voiced concern over the future of federal funding.

A committee put together to implement the exchange, however, has decided to keep working on the issue.

Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, also a Republican, said it made sense to continue working on the exchange because the law requires it be implemented. It would be better to have one that is tailored to Kansas needs instead of waiting for the federal government to implement it, she said.

"One way or another, we are going to have an exchange," she said.


Les Blevins 6 years, 9 months ago

Gov. Brownback is proving he puts his political future with the Tea Party Republicans ahead of our own interests (here in Kansas) when he rejects federal grant monies that would help Kansas citizens pay for doing what we need to do, and what our Insurance Commissioner and our former governor support doing. I suggest he resign, quickly reverse himself, kick in the 31 million bucks himself or ask his buddies the Koch brothers to contribute the money.

Mike1949 6 years, 9 months ago

Totally agree! My wife needs help on paying her insurance, She is working below minimum wage and we could use some of that $31 million to help her pay for health insurance. I guess I better look up Brownback's address so I can send him a bill since he is rejecting federal aid that could have helped us. That is the new Kansas, the working poor! I'm sure he gets paid more than minimum wage!

bradh 6 years, 9 months ago

The way I read the article, you'd still be looking for help with your health insurance if the grant had been accepted. The grant money was to be used for an insurance exchange. I would guess a website where you could go to buy insurance. Nothing about reduced premiums. If your wife is working for minimum wage, the health insurance she has is probably not as good as the health insurance mandated by the new national health care act. You will probably be required to pay more and get better coverage under the health care act.

jafs 6 years, 9 months ago

The point of the exchanges, as I understand them, is to increase consumer choice and competition, thus possibly serving to bring premiums down.

KEITHMILES05 6 years, 9 months ago

He's such an idiot it just makes me double over in laughter all the nitwits who voted for this moron.

ferrislives 6 years, 9 months ago

rockchalk1977, I must ask, what do you personally think of Mitt Romney as a presidential candidate for the GOP?

ferrislives 6 years, 9 months ago

But a big part of Mitt's plan was to require all citizens of Mass. to get the insurance or pay a fine, which is exactly what Obama wants to do, and it's what's failing in the courts right now (rightfully so).

That's why I was curious about your own opinion, since you've made it clear on your own stance. Thanks for answering my question.

meggers 6 years, 9 months ago


There is no "nationalization" or "government takeover" of health care. Those lies were debunked long ago. In fact, Mitt Romney got a 'Pants on Fire' for making the same claim:

And here is some interesting info for you about the debt:

Lawrence_Pilot 6 years, 9 months ago

Uh, it's actually less than 1/4 of what you said. See So, now that I know you're a liar, I can't believe anything you say.

Jimo 6 years, 9 months ago

That would still be you. Coming up with a bizarre number "debt by taxpayer" and then trying to shovel that into the debate as "the amount you owe" is lying.

If you look closely, you'll see this is debt divided by federal income taxpayers. Of course, that ignores (a) those who pay no income tax but plenty of other taxes, (b) those who pay income taxes but pay even more in other taxes, and (c) those, mostly children, who will be paying taxes even if not this year. It also ignores the fact that the national debt will be overwhelmingly paid off by the wealthy, if for no other reason than that's where the money all is.

Unless you're a millionaire, "the amount you owe" for 99% of people is a fairly small number (even if imprecise). I'd be surprised if it totaled $20k. In fact, if we returned to a traditional level of progressive taxation, for 75% of people it would be closer to $10k.

Lawrence Pilot was correct. You owe him an apology. (Given your past record, no one will be holding their breath.)

Scott Tichenor 6 years, 9 months ago

Wow, has the LJW officially turned into Fox News... excuse me. Fox Infotainment? Using terms like "Obamacare" which is a favorite of the extreme right-wing is pretty insulting and is not "news." Shame on you Journal World. You've officially crossed the line. That's not journalism. That's using a business to tout your organizations obvious right-wing bias. Go ahead, look up my email and write to me personally. Love to tell you what I really think about this lame excuse for the company that parades as "communication" in this town. Why I quit taking the paper.

Steve Bunch 6 years, 9 months ago

I agree. Putting the term in quotation marks doesn't ameliorate the situation. Call it by its real name, the Affordable Care Act of 2010.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 9 months ago

I recall while living in San Francisco a number of years ago a city proposition called "Affordable Housing Initiative". It had a nice title and it passed rather easily. I voted against it. In the voter handbook, where arguments for and against the proposition were presented, it was noted that the costs to rehabilitate some single room occupancy hotels it was going to cost roughly double the going rate for construction on Knob Hill, one of the cities most expensive areas. So what made this housing affordable? Nothing, except the title of the initiative. I see the "Affordable Care Act of 2010" and think the same thing.

citizen4honor 6 years, 9 months ago

Calling it Affordable Care Act of 2010 is nothing but a lie and a title to pursposely mislead. Looks like it worked on you. Affordable is exactly what the bill is not. How can a bill that adds a special tax for Class I medical devices lower cost? If supplies cost more - costs go up. How about the all the new rules and regulations? Males now have to pay for birth control, pregnancy raising all their costs.

Jimo 6 years, 9 months ago

Yes, strange how Affordable Care Act, mathematics, evolution, even gravity have fooled everyone on earth except for the unique species of Mad Tea Hatters, who have unique insight based on their 6th grade educations into the reality of the world.

Rules and regulations lowering costs? But that can't be. GOP dogma states that these must increase costs! No, no - does not compute! Does not compute!!!

Gee, how would covering people by insurance and taxing excessive spending possible lower costs? How is it that Americans spend 2x what normal people do on health care? How, oh how could this possibly work? After all, illness, suffering, and dying is free! Dispensing medical care in emergency rooms doesn't cost much at all. Duplicative paperwork, chaos, bizarre pricing structures, profit --- those don't come at any cost at all. Hmmmm.....let's call Professor Beck and his Wonder Dog! Squint your eyes and think very, very, very hard!!

"Males now have to pay for birth control, pregnancy raising all their costs." wow. Like we weren't already convinced you were clueless.

Actually, the CBO reported just this week that anticipation of cost controls under ACA was already leading to cost constraints in health care as companies take action to get ahead of the program.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 6 years, 9 months ago

The reason you quit taking the paper is because it is free on the web.

doggymom 6 years, 9 months ago

Spot on, Nugget. Shame on LJW but we know they won't change anything.

ksjayhawk74 6 years, 9 months ago

"Obamacare" is what the LJW calls the program that helps public health immunization programs? Really?

Is the LJW taking cues from Faux News?

jaywalker 6 years, 9 months ago

I could have sworn I'd seen several news outlets, including CNN, use the term 'Obamacare.' Is that actually not the case?

meggers 6 years, 9 months ago

It's called the Affordable Care Act. Rothschild probably used it because Brownback calls it that out of disrespect for the legislation and the president.

Most reputable news outlets don't use it to describe the bill, but will use it to quote the jerks who insist on calling it that.

jaywalker 6 years, 9 months ago

I knew what the actual bill was termed, I just thought Obamacare had become the shorter nickname. Honestly never thought about it being a derogatory reference. But now that I think about it I do remember hearing the President making a reference to the term last week during his bus tour and it's all clicking into place. Slow on the uptake, I guess.
Thanks for the reply, meggers.

Bob_Keeshan 6 years, 9 months ago

rockchalk1977 (anonymous) replies… Nice try ferris but the Massachusetts plan was not a "government takeover" of the healthcare system.

In what ways are the functions of Obamacare a "government takeover" where Romneycare is not?

Kirk Larson 6 years, 9 months ago

The republicans will likely regret calling it "Obamacare" when a few years from now it is a much appreciated entitlement and we all wonder how we got along without it and aren't we ready to make the next step to a public option or even, dare we say it, a single payer system. The name "Obamacare" will seal in the minds of the electorate that the system needed changing, President Obama and the Democrats stood up for what people needed, and the tearepublicanbaggers resisted on behalf of their insurance industry masters.

Cant_have_it_both_ways 6 years, 9 months ago

The Affordable care act is only affordable for those who put nothing into the system. For those of us who pay taxes, it is not affordable at all.

Bob_Keeshan 6 years, 9 months ago

It is amazing, but while 50% of the population supposedly pays no taxes, almost 90% of the posters on do.

BlackVelvet 6 years, 9 months ago

Just no illegals or super rich on here I guess.

whatupdown 6 years, 9 months ago

The Republicans don't want you to have heath care but they want you to sign your organ donor card. They want the poor/lower mid to wowk hard, die younger and not collect SS or spend any medicare/medicaid funds, also they don't want to have to waite in line any longer to see the doctor as they would with many more people insured. Gotta love those greedy selfish Republicans, they shure love stupid voters

cato_the_elder 6 years, 9 months ago

Why is "Obamacare" in quotes? That's what every thinking person calls it. Obama owns it. The crooked Democrats who took political bribes at the last minute to vote for it own it. Pelosi owns it. Reid owns it. Sebelius owns it. Quintessential RINO Praeger owns it.

Ultimately, five Justices of the United States Supreme Court will deep-six it. Even after it's been held unconstitutional, it will always be known as Obamacare, and will be viewed as the failed centerpiece of Obama's failed one-term presidency.

beatrice 6 years, 9 months ago

No, it isn't what every thinking person calls it. It is only what people flooded with Republican talking points call it that without thinking.

Those five justices who will deep six it -- they sound rather activist to me if you already know how they will rule.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 9 months ago

Since they're the only ones on the Court who understand the history, meaning, and proper role of the Commerce Clause, they will disagree with their four activist colleagues on the Court and hold Obamacare unconstitutional.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 9 months ago

Ironically, the only provision of "O-care" up for review by the Supremes is the requirement to buy insurance, which is the most Republican of all measures in the bill.

cato_the_elder 6 years, 9 months ago

Since every Republican voted against Obamacare, that seems like something of a stretch, Bozo.

Scott Tichenor 6 years, 9 months ago

Well, pardon me. My fault for treating the Journal World as a credible news source represented by real journalists. Now I see it for what it really is. A big steaming pile of political crap.

Armored_One 6 years, 9 months ago

I know it won't mesh correctly with your personal prejudices against the Journal World, but could it be as simple as more people recognize the term "obamacare" than they do "Affordable Care Act"?

Although I do find it somewhat amusing that desipre your claims of dissatisfaction with the Journal World, you still managed to make enough time in your life to not only read the article, or at least scan through it, then post several comments about said article.

Personally, if I don't care for something, especially if I am looking for information and a specific place does not meet my criteria for information on the topic, I don't hang around and take cheap shots at it. I simply find another source and leave the one that I don't care for alone.

It kind of gives the impression that you are more interested in trying to grab some sort of notice from someone, perhaps in the Journal World, than you are in actual information.

KS 6 years, 9 months ago

Nugget - For someone so bent on putting down the LJW, you sure seem to spend enough time online reading it. Like healthcare, you stopped the print version because you had to pay for it and this version is FREE! Just like the forthcoming "OBAMACARE"!!!! FREE healthcare for all. If it is free, I want it. There is nothing that the government does that is "AFFORDABLE". Can't wait to see what the Supremes do with this. I doubt seriously that they have the you know what to throw it all out. Besides, if it is FREE, I want it. Let some other sucker pay for it. Everybody wants healthcare, but nobody wants to pay for it. OBAMACARE is the answer. It will be FREE and we all want it. Well......., just be careful what you ask for.

mloburgio 6 years, 9 months ago

Kansas not pursuing federal prevention dollars Major federal initiative will bypass Kansas because no one applied for grant?

The federal government is poised to start spending $900 million nationwide over the next five years in an effort to battle costly chronic ailments such as obesity and diabetes.

The initiative is considered the single largest push to date by the national government to encourage disease prevention. But Kansas likely won’t see a dollar of that money.

Why not? Well, one big reason is that no one here asked.

The July 15 deadline for submitting applications for the so-called Community Transformation Grants has come and gone.

The handful of Kansas officials who met the eligibility criteria for submitting proposals to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention chose not to for reasons that have left some public health officials disappointed and baffled.

vuduchyld 6 years, 9 months ago

Welcome to Brownbackistan, it's where Kansas used to be Welcome to Brownbackistan, it's our new theorcracy

btsflk 6 years, 9 months ago

Bless you Kathleen Sebelius!

Sandy Praeger for Governor!

Scott Tichenor 6 years, 9 months ago

Oh. Got all the Brownback/Fox News sycophants up in arms I see.

You're right about one thing, the web site may be free in terms of $, but you pay in intelligence by spending too much time on it. I simply refused to continue to pay for the writing they call "Editorials" on this site that are really just political advertisements posing as journalism. Gave that same feedback to the LJW staff when they call and asked why I'd dropped the paper. I asked if they'd ever received that feedback. There was a pause, then a chuckle. "Daily," was the answer.

Armored_One 6 years, 9 months ago

Gee, you mean that they were dismissive of your all-encompasing declaration against the Journal World?? My gods, how can they do that to someone of your intellect and breeding?? The heathens!

bolshavik_vw 6 years, 9 months ago

Good we need to do more of this. He is the worst governor in this state, and his opinion is not worth the time he took to express it.

camper 6 years, 9 months ago

Using the word "Obamacare" is offensive to me because it is a negative label and the term seems to imply a negative without even having to really argue against it. I hear a lot of poliiticans say, I am against "Obamacare", "Obamacare", is unconstitutional. This is a poliitical litmus test for me, and any politician who uses the "Obamacare" tactic is someone I will never vote for.

Even more disturbing is the fact that the Affordable Care Act was the 1st attempt in a long time to try and reform Health Care. But what we got instead was a bill actually to the Republican's and Insurance Biz liking. It was a watered down compromise that had no public option. But now that it passed, it is quite easy for politicians to belittle it and label it.

And one reality remains. Health Care is going to need further reforms and/or some drastic reductions in coverage and care if our goal is to balance the budget and lower entitlements. After this debacle, I doubt we will see any improvement in a long time.

What was so bad about a public option? Option being the key word. Employers liked it. Employees and individuals also liked it. I think I know who it was that didn't like it and why they didn't like it. It was the insurance biz. A public option threatened their market share.

I give President Obama credit for "caring", though I do not like the result. It was something he campaigned on and he did his best to keep his promise. I give discredit to hypocritical politicians.

kansanjayhawk 6 years, 9 months ago

Ms. Praeger--if the law is ruled "unconstitutional" we don't need the exchange. "one way or another we are going to have the exchange." This just confirms to me that you as an elected Republican would be better off to be honest and join the Democrats! We need this Obamacare law to be repealed and sent to the ashheap of history it is a disaster!

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