Michigan Democrats, Michigan Republicans — June 21, 2013 at 12:51 pm

Michigan Democrats lead while Republicans walk away from Medicaid expansion


Democratic candidate for Governor Mark Schauer calls for leadership while Governor Rick Snyder asks Michiganders to call their Senators…who have already left for vacation.

Governor Rick Snyder couldn’t get Senate Republicans to do the right thing for Michiganders and vote yes on Medicaid expansion — or even vote on it at all, for that matter. So now he’s asking Michigan’s citizens to call their Senators and tell them they want Medicaid expansion.

That’s all well and good. Here at Eclectablog, we’re all for citizen action and have been urging readers to do just that for weeks. But a Governor should do more than that. Much, much more.

Recognizing that, Democratic candidate for Governor Mark Schauer issued a statement urging Governor Snyder to take stronger action to ensure the Medicaid expansion he claims to support so ardently. Here’s Schauer’s statement in full.

Gov. Snyder’s failure to convince members of his own party to even bring this common-sense legislation up for a vote demonstrates a clear lack of leadership on his part. By 2016, it is estimated that this bill will support up to 18,000 new jobs across the state, and increase economic activity in Michigan by over $2 billion. It’s time to get this done.

Today I’m calling on Gov. Snyder to exercise his power under the Michigan constitution and immediately convene a special session of the Legislature to pass Medicaid expansion legislation. Moreover, I’m calling on the governor to veto every new bill that comes to his desk starting today until the Senate passes this critical legislation. The clock is ticking. If Lansing can’t get this done, billions of our hard-earned Michigan tax dollars will go to other states. Health care coverage for nearly 400,000 Michiganders is on the line, and our state needs real leadership from our governor to get it done, not more excuses and empty rhetoric.

Senate Minority leader Gretchen Whitmer is asking for similar leadership from Michigan Republicans:

Had Governor Snyder been engaged on this issue instead of leaving the country as the legislation was struggling to find support in the Senate, it may have never come to this point, but the message he sent the Republicans last night was exactly right: Take a vote, not a vacation!

The people of Michigan deserve a vote on this legislation, not elected officials putting their political motives and the whims of the Tea Party ahead of doing the right thing.

It’s not too late to make Medicaid expansion happen in Michigan, but it very soon will be, so I hope you’ll join me in calling on the Senate Republicans to get back to the Capitol and do their jobs.

Together, we can send a very clear message to these obstructionists here in Lansing that if they don’t want to be leaders, then we’ll gladly find others who do in the next election.

Are Senate Republicans listening? They’re too busy catching flights or, in the case of Senator Majority Leader Randy Richardville, hosting fundraisers. Today is Sen. Richardville’s Annual Walleye Outing, with a ticket price of $400 a head.

Just imagine what that kind of money would mean to someone who can’t afford health insurance.

[Image credit: Michigan Nurses Association, from their campaign in support of Medicaid expansion.]