Republicans help the unneedy, but not needy

April 14, 2014 

I sincerely hope that my Republican friends and the politicians they sent to Tallahassee had a chance to see and hear "60 Minutes" this past Sunday.

In a piece called "The Health Wagon," the program delineated the plight of West Virginians who are poor, unemployed or homeless to get medical care.

These citizens can neither afford health care nor can they afford health care insurance. The story depicted these Americans as members of the "Third World."

West Virginia, like Florida has opted out of the expansion of Medicaid. This program provides free funds to states to pay for the health care of the indigent.

It is always a surprise to me to hear Republican politicians extol "American exceptionalism." And yet these same politicians seem to use every means possible to suppress, disenfranchise, demean and ignore citizens who are not as fortunate as they.

When it comes to health care, our well-endowed legislators can't find the strength to provide a million Floridians with free health care insurance.

Of course, they have no problem taking care of themselves. Up until this year Florida legislators paid $8 a month for personal health care and $32 for family insurance.

After being shamed into increasing their monthly payments, these "servants of the people" now pay $50 for single coverage and $180 for family coverage, rates that are significantly below what the average citizen must pay.

It is the same old sad story. The Republicans have no problem taking care of themselves and those who don't need taking care of. But they seem to have a blind eye and a cold heart when it comes to taking care of those who need help.

This is a far cry from Jeb Bush, who once said, "The function of government is to take care of those who cannot care for themselves."

Ed Siemaszko

Perico Island

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