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Get ready for it ... Nazis!
Ah, yes, welcome to the world of pissed off tea party gooberheads in Arizona. Jan Brewer is one of the few Republican governors who has accepted the expanded Medicaid provision. Lest anyone think the anti-choice, anti-immigrant, and anti-LGBT governor has suddenly grown an ethical appendage, her decision to expand the state's Medicaid program was mostly a financial calculation. But so be it, we'll take it.

That goes to show how friggin' vile these other peckerheads are — governors who refuse federal funds out of political spite, when doing so not only helps hundreds of thousands of their neighbors, but it's also way better for the state's bottom line. To her credit, Brewer understands that without federal funding, even after Arizona picks up about 10 percent of the tab, the state would be on the hook for a lot more, covering the low-income families who qualify through AHCCCS, the state's Medicaid program. According to the CBO:

In short, the Medicaid expansion will cover 17 million low-income people at a very modest cost to states — a cost that will be at least partly offset by savings in uncompensated care and other state-funded services for the uninsured.
When Brewer announced her decision, and then ram-rodded Medicaid through the Legislature last summer, with threats to replace House and Senate leaders, a special session, and all kinds of good stuff, the far right went bananas, where they've remained. They tried to get a referendum on the ballot that would permit voters to accept or reject Medicaid. Nope, not enough signatures. The Goldwater Foundation, a rightwing think tank, filed a lawsuit on behalf of three dozen GOP legislators and other citizens, arguing that the vote required a supermajority. Nope, went nowhere. Even still, the wingnut blogosphere and a lot of political discourse remains downright toxic:
A. J. LaFaro, the chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Committee, compared the governor to Judas during a hearing in the State House of Representatives.

Every Democrat voted to accept Medicaid, and Gov. Brewer was able to corral nine Republicans to go along with the proposal. Their actions may eventually cover more than 300,000 people under the expanded Medicaid program, and state health officials are pleased with the progress so far:

Nearly a quarter million Arizona residents have secured private health insurance or Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act as a late surge during the final weeks of enrollment more than doubled marketplace sign-ups.
Well, that can't be a good thing, says tea party nitwits and the usual Russell Pearce-style haters (the author of the "papers please" bill, Pearce may have been recalled, but he's still slithering around as vice-chair of the state GOP). These dickheads hate anything with Obama's fingerprints on it, no matter how good it might be for citizens and the state budget. And heaven help you if you're one of the Republican traitors who joined with the governor and Democrats. Most of them have a very large target on their back.
This week, a former Maricopa County Republican Party official – a guy who I'm guessing is drinking something stronger than tea – put out a scathing attack on a fellow Republican, equating Rep. Heather Carter to the French women who cavorted with the Nazis during World War II.

Carter's war crime: she voted last year to expand Medicaid in Arizona.

Gov. Brewer has kept a promise and is raising money for the Republicans who bolted from their caucus. They voted to improve the lives of many Arizonans without costing the state a dime, yet to the GOP leadership, Rep. Carter and the handful of other GOP female legislators who supported Brewer are like the French women who slept with Nazis. And what happened to them? After the war their heads were shaved, a Scarlet Letter of shame. But we're a lot more civilized here, says Tom Husband, the former GOP official who launched this ugly attack, which he titled "But they didn't shave her head."
"Upon the liberation of Paris by the Allied army, I remember watching newsreels of those traitorous women having their heads shaved in revenge for their perfidious conduct....

The preference election was a chance for Carter's fellow precinct committeemen to express themselves on her collaboration. And they did! But they didn't shave her head."

 

No, for her crime Carter didn't have her locks cut (how big of them), but she came in a very distant third in a straw poll of district committeepersons. Like the Blue Meanies in Congress, the GOP pooh-bahs here often do not represent the views of constituents, even many Republicans, who favor Medicaid expansion. As Laurie Roberts says in her column, the far-right is trying to replace Rep. Carter, who easily won the 2012 primary, with a swell dude:

Party operatives in this north Phoenix precinct preferred [David] Smith, a guy who was arrested for DUI while serving in the Legislature in 2012, a perennial candidate who was once kicked out of the Legislature for violating campaign-finance laws.
Smith took on Carter in 2012, and she beat him handily, by 2-1, but that's the guy Obamacare haters want to install. Not all Republicans support Husband's language or its inferences. Former GOP legislator Chris Herstam said:
"To compare an excellent female Arizona legislator with French women who slept with the Nazis is sexist trash."

I'll give a Republican the last word. The last two actually because that's what Tom Husband and his ilk are.

Originally posted to Maggie's Farm on Sat May 03, 2014 at 12:51 AM PDT.

Also republished by Phoenix Kossacks and Baja Arizona Kossacks.

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