How does a governor get money from Obama via the state that the state legislature dissaproves? Yesterday, Gov. Kasich discovered by going to the board that controls the money and convincing its members to get and give Obamacare funds. To guarantee a positive vote, House Speaker Bill Batchelder (R-Medina) replaced Controlling Board members, Rep. Ron Amstutz (R-Wooster) and Rep. Cliff Rosenberger (R-Clarksville), who were committed No votes with Rep. Ross McGregor (R-Springfield) and Rep. Jeff McClain (R-Upper Sandusky).
Actual member voting was as follows: Randy Cole, appointed by Republican Governor John Kasich, joined Rep. Chris Redfern (D-Catawba), Sen. Tom Sawyer (D-Akron), Rep. Ross McGregor (R-Springfield), and Sen. Chris Widener (R-Springfield) in voting to spend the Obamacare Medicaid expansion funding available from January 1, 2014 through the end of the biennium. Sen. Bill Coley (R-Liberty Twp.) and Rep. Jeff McClain (R-Upper Sandusky) opposed the appropriation, which required a simple majority from the seven-member Controlling Board.
Even though this could help thousands of low-income Ohioans get Obama-mandated health insurance, the Ohio Liberty Coalition, Buckeye Institute, and others claim Kasich and the Controlling Board violated the Ohio constitutional law. “The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law is expected to pass a legal challenge to the Controlling Board’s decision, as the board is required by state law to act consistent with the intent of the Ohio General Assembly. Earlier this year the General Assembly stripped Medicaid expansion from Kasich’s proposed budget and even added a budget provision forbidding the expansion.”
Here is another case of ends justify the means however illegal they may be.
Nonetheless, the political battle to expand medicare in Ohio continues on to the Ohio Supreme Court who will vote on the legality of Controlling Board’s vote.
Source: MediaTrackers, October 21, 2013.