It’s terribly funny to see liberal’s contort as to how, as governor, Haley Barbour supported a state-run health insurance exchange. In their efforts to help pave the way for ObamaCare in Mississippi, some will call on the most feeble of arguments. Conservatives should get a good chuckle when Mississippi lefty’s are forced to refer fondly to a man they so loathed while he was in office.
To look at quotes from the former governor about the behemoth ObamaCare, and then to look at the actions he took in helping Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney apply for $21 million in federal money to put together an exchange seems a perfect lesson in political contradiction. He seemed to be preaching one message to the public while trying to get money from the feds to Chaney for the opposite reasons. This little play is nothing new. We see it out of our representatives in Washington all the time.
The former “Guv-nuh” does seem to contradict himself from time to time. Two weeks ago he said Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney had to give people a reason to vote for him, and then a few hours later he said Romney was smart for not laying out his policies. That’s a tight wire to walk for such a heavy set fellow.
So did Barbour support the exchange, or didn’t he? Yes. He clearly did support the idea of an exchange and went after federal money to start one, while saying he did not support the federal takeover of health care that is ObamaCare. It all sounds so Kerry-esque: I was for it, before I was against it.
But to all this I say, so what?
No one would say that Haley Barbour isn’t a factor in Mississippi politics. But, he hasn’t been Governor of Mississippi for over 6 months. Anyone who watches news knows he has been all over the country raising money for Karl Rove’s Crossroads PAC and playing national politics. He likely hasn’t spent more than 5 nights in Mississippi since Governor Phil Bryant took the reins as state executive in January. It’s no longer Barbour’s primary fight.
It’s ours, and this exchange is bad business for those of us still in Mississippi. Not because the exchange itself is a bad idea. But, because Chaney is now getting permission and advice from Obama’s Health and Human Services on how to set it up. That is the problem. It is compliant with ObamaCare, and it is compliant with the federal takeover of the right to our own personal and private decisions.
Chaney says the exchange will be run by Mississippians for Mississippians. That’s a catchy line. It fits on a bumper sticker. However, while I will dare a guess that no one thought President Obama would be sitting on the Mississippi exchange advisory board, it doesn’t mean it won’t be run by the federal government through carrot-and-stick dollars and mandates.
In essence, Chaney is doing the federal governments work for them. He is setting up the exchange and running it at Mississippi’s expense under an agreement that allows the federal government to change the rules, and eventually squeeze out private insurance through regulation. When all those companies are either out of business or part of the exchange program then we are one short step away from a single-payer system.
Small businesses will be “taxed” for not providing “government approved” coverage. The tax will be more cost effective and easier to pay while sending employees to the government run exchange. Those businesses that do try to follow the regulations and help hold on to their freedom will get squeezed tighter and tighter with red tape, taking up valuable resources that could be put into innovation and job creation. Little by little, the right to our privacy will be handed over to “government approved” insurance companies because the government says we have to do it or be “taxed”.
It is government extortion that would have thousands of new IRS agents collecting from citizens for the privilege of keeping their right to privacy. That is nothing more than thuggery with a badge.
Chaney is setting us up for all this while we still await the results of a case to be heard in October that was filed on behalf of Governor Phil Bryant, one that will likely have to go through several appeals. Chaney is doing this as many states stand up against this extreme violation of the tenth amendment. Meanwhile, even though he says nothing will be done until after November, the meetings of Chaney’s Mississippi exchange advisory board continue next month.
Some may attempt to win public approval for the exchange effort by calling the name of Haley Barbour. But, don’t be fooled. This is Mike Chaney’s doing. This is Mike Chaney’s exchange. This is Mike Chaney’s partnership with President Barack Obama to take away our right to private medical decisions.
And, whatever the outcome, it is Mike Chaney who will own it.
About Keith: Keith Plunkett has worked on communications issues with a range of public officials from aldermen to Congressmen, and a variety of businesses, governmental agencies and non-profits. He serves or has served as a board member of several non-profit, civic and political organizations. Contact him by going to HorizonMediaMarketing.com or follow him on Twitter @Keithplunkett
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