The Billings Gazette reported this weekend that most Republican lawmakers opposing federal health reform are also signing up for government health plans.
What they didn’t report is this interesting exchange between Sen. Kendall Van Dyk (D-Billings) and Sen. Art Wittich (R-outer Gallatin County area). Van Dyk asked Sen. Wittich about the appropriateness of attempting to repeal the health care bill for Montanans, while taking advantage of taxpayer funded health insurance for legislators.
Sen. Wittich responded that if people are concerned about having health insurance they either become so poor as to be eligible for Medicaid or try to work for the state of Montana. Medicaid is the state program that pays for the elderly and disabled as well as the very poor: to be eligible as an adult in Montana, you’d have to make less than $6,000 per year. And yeah, all one million people in the state are going to work for state government?
You’ll also want to read Ed Kemmick’s take on the matter. My favorite part:
Hypocrisy is alive and well in the Legislature. The same Republican majority that is beating its chest over promises to eviscerate federal health care reforms has no trouble accepting generous health insurance benefits from the state of Montana.
Some mobile users will have better luck viewing the video here.