Letter to the Editor: Falling behind
BY Charlie Cantrell, Tulsa
Sunday, December 02, 2012
12/02/12 at 3:37 AM
Under Gov. Mary Fallin's leadership Oklahoma is winning the race to the bottom on every front pertinent to economic growth and quality of life. The most recent example is her refusal to accept the Medicaid expansion offered under the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, if you prefer.
Accepting federal funding to help the marginally poor should have been an easy decision for anyone concerned for vulnerable citizens or the overall welfare of our state. Her claim that it cost too much was based on absurd conjecture and distortion. The program is fully funded federally for the first three years and 90 percent thereafter. So, according to Fallin, Oklahoma cannot afford to kick in 10 percent three years down the road to take care of a small segment of beleaguered citizens even if doing so would benefit health-care providers and recipients, save state dollars and hold down premium costs for everyone with health insurance.
This is ridiculous for a state that continues to fall behind in public education and overall health. Expanding Medicaid coverage in the state is a no-brainer for anyone with a brain. But to further her political career, Fallin has embraced a radical-right agenda that places ideology over common sense, moral imperatives and the common good. It appears obvious that her political ambitions are more important to her than people or a state that needs all the help it can get.
Once again Oklahomans are paying the price and our state continues to fall behind the rest of the nation.
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Gov. Mary Fallin announces the results of her food drive for regional food banks during a press conference in the Blue
Room of the State Capitol in Oklahoma City on Nov. 19. PAUL HELLSTERN/The Oklahoman