Can you smell the hypocrisy in the air? Sadly, as Lawrence O'Donnell and Ari Melber pointed out in the segment above, if this story gets too much coverage, Gov. Goodhair might use it as an excuse to change his mind and decide to stick it to his constituents rather than accept help for some of the most vulnerable in his state.
Politico reported Tuesday evening that Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s (R) administration is in negotiations with the Obama White House to accept about $100 million in federal money to implement an Obamacare Medicaid program to help elderly and disabled Americans.
Perry has been a heated opponent of the health law. He refused to accept $100 billion in federal funding to expand Texas’ Medicaid program under Obamacare, which could have helped 1.5 million poor Texans afford basic health benefits. As recently as April, Perry essentially called the expansion a joke. “Seems to me April Fool’s Day is the perfect day to discuss something as foolish as Medicaid expansion, and to remind everyone that Texas will not be held hostage by the Obama administration’s attempt to force us into the fool’s errand of adding more than a million Texans to a broken system,” said Perry.
Now, Perry is seeking federal dollars for Texas’ Medicaid program anyway.
The Affordable Care Act grants state funding to expand a program called Community First Choice, which aims to improve the community-based medical services available to disabled and elderly Americans. The wildly popular program is administered through Medicaid and could prevent thousands of disabled and older Americans from being uprooted from their homes and into a long-term care facility for their treatments. Approximately 12,000 Texans could take advantage of it in the first year alone.
Perry spokespeople emphasized to Politico that the governor’s support for the program — and the Medicaid funds that make it possible — shouldn’t come as a surprise and doesn’t change his position on the Affordable Care Act.
Perry's been playing politics with the issue forever. There's no reason to believe that's changed, but if he accepts the funding for his state, that's a move in the right direction. It was predicted that a lot of these states that tried to hold out would end up coming around within a few years. Texas looks like they're coming around sooner than many thought they would.