I don't see him doing any push-ups, but Democratic candidate for governor Joe Lowe is pushing his opponent, Governor Dennis Daugaard, on his treatment of hospitals and poor folks who need health coverage. Lowe opens the week with a press release decrying the Governor's refusal to take a huge infusion of federal cash to expand Medicaid.
Lowe opens not with the moral argument, but a practical market argument: pay people for the work they do!
I have the quaint opinion that doctors, nurses, and hospitals should be paid for their work. Dennis thinks they should just expect that they'll get stuck with the bill a certain percent of the time and should hope they can make up for it by overcharging someone else [Joe Lowe, press release, 2014.01.20].
Governor Daugaard claims that we don't dare expand Medicaid because he continues to "have doubts about the federal government’s ability to deliver on their promises." Lowe says that claim is inconsistent Tea-Party pandering:
If you follow that logic, South Dakota should not accept highway funds, school funds, college funds or any other billions in federal money that flow through the state budget. He's using a double standard.
That double standard points to another big difference between Dennis and me. He's apparently afraid of the Tea Party. I'm not [Lowe, 2014.01.20].
Lowe is hoping any Tea Party vote for which Daugaard may be angling will be neutralized by the 48,000 South Dakotans he's trying to help:
We have 48,000 people left in the cold by Dennis's double standard. It's mean-spirited and short-sighted. It's damaging to people's health, it's damaging to our medical providers, and in the long run it's more expensive [Lowe, 2014.01.20].
Governor Daugaard, you and the Legislature have two months to take this issue off the election table. Expand Medicaid, and you help people, pay hospitals, stimulate the economy, and take a really useful argument away from your political opponents.