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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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(Keith Johnson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Governor Gary Herbert, left, and Pamela Atkinson listen to the stories of individuals who will benefit most from his proposed alternative to Medicaid expansion, during a panel discussion March 6, 2014 at the Fourth Street Clinic in Salt Lake City.
Extension of remarks: Expanding Medicaid

On Medicaid, Herbert has Obama over a barrel — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

"The bargaining position that Utah Gov. Gary Herbert is in as he dickers with federal officials over his "Healthy Utah Plan" is reminiscent of the famous 1973 National Lampoon magazine cover. The photo of a pistol pointed at a dog and the caption, ‘If You Don’t Buy This Magazine, We’ll Kill This Dog.’

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"Herbert knows that if President Obama does not give him the waivers he wants from federal Medicaid requirements, he retains the option to just walk away. That would do great harm to thousands of Utahns who have no political clout, and make the governor a hero among those who have lots. ..."

Feds seem softer on Medicaid — Robert Gehrke | The Salt Lake Tribune

"Gov. Gary Herbert said Thursday he’s confident Utah will be given wide latitude to provide health care to the state’s poorest residents, and hopes to have an agreement with the Obama administration on a program by this summer. ..."

Is Medicaid expansion inevitable in Utah? — Kirsten Stewart | The Salt Lake Tribune

"In pushing his ‘Healthy Utah’ private-insurance alternative to expanding Medicaid, Gov. Gary Herbert must overcome Republican angst over ‘Obamacare’ and ideological distaste for entitlement programs.

"Political insiders put better odds on his brokering a funding deal with the feds than winning over members of his own party in Utah’s Republican-led Legislature. ..."

Herbert in the middle — Ogden Standard-Examiner Editorial

"We commend Utah Gov. Gary Herbert for his efforts to craft a compromise on Medicaid funding with the federal government. The governor has sent representatives to Washington D.C. to talk about Utah’s receiving a federal block grant to get roughly 110,000 low-income Utahns access to health care. Next month, Herbert will join the Utah team in Washington D.C.

"This action places the governor in the sensible middle of the Medicaid debate. ..."

Another punt on Medicaid expansion shows poor leadership — Casper Star-Tribune Editorial

" ... By blocking Medicaid expansion once more, Scott and company have supplied ammunition to the Wyoming Democratic Party, stuck hospitals with charity care, forced insured Wyomingites to continue paying higher bills due to cost-shifting and kept the state from saving nearly $50 million. ..."

Health care industry bleeding jobs as Legislature sleeps — St. Louis Post-Dispatch Editorial

"One. Thousand. Jobs.

"That is what Missouri’s health care industry has already lost because the Republicans who control the Missouri Legislature have refused to expand Medicaid to the state’s growing class of working poor. ..."

The Missouri Senate and the inconvenient poor — Barbara Shelly | The Kansas City Star

"Republicans in the Missouri Senate came back from spring break with a harsh message for anyone holding out hope for Medicaid expansion: Nothing to see here. Move on. ..."

Walker right to skip liability of Medicaid funds — Racine (Wis.) Journal Times Editorial

" ... But our ultimate goal should be to motivate more people to get ahead, rather than giving them a reason to stay where they are because of fear of losing government assistance. ..."

Medicaid expansion helps mentally ill — Wichita (Kan.) Eagle Editorial

"Gov. Sam Brownback has been talking recently about the need to provide better care for the mentally ill. But if he really wants to help, he should stop blocking the federal expansion of Medicaid, which would enable thousands of Kansans to receive mental health treatment in their communities. ..."

Va. Republicans need to end their excuses for not expanding medicaid — Washington Post Editorial



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