Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A New Variation To The Same Old Corruption

My latest at Crooks and Liars:

Scott Walker's standard operating procedure, like any other Teapublican, is that of pay to play. A prime example of that is when  Walker solicited $700,000 from Gogebic Taconite just as he was getting ready to sign off on newly relaxed mining regulations.

Sometimes, Walker likes to mix things up.

When Walker refused to accept federal funding to help expand BadgerCare - which knocked some 87,000 people out of the health care coverage program and cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars - it was just presumed that this was part of his plantation economics.

It turned out to be a variation of his usual pay to play, but in this case, it was pay not to play:
According to the campaign finance watchdog group the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, members of the health insurance industry donated over $1.27 million to Gov. Walker from 2009 through 2013.

Wisconsin Democracy Campaign President Mike McCabe tells 27 News that is close to seven times more than the $183,196 Gov. Jim Doyle got from the same industry from 2005 to 2010.

The liberal social justice group Citizen Action of Wisconsin claims there is a direct correlation between those donations and the Governor's rejection of the federal Medicaid expansion.
According to Citizen Action, the Big Insurance companies stood to make more than $350 million by Walker's refusal of the federal funding.

When Walker was confronted with this accusation, you could see his nervousness and the usually smooth, scripted and self-controlled politician's veneer was ripped off to leaving a stammering idiot:
Citizen Action officials believe there's no doubt Gov. Walker's made his decision to benefit the insurance companies who donated to his campaign. When asked about that specific allegation Monday afternoon, Gov. Walker seemed to be at a rare loss for words.

"Actually if you think about it, its just the opposite," said Gov. Walker. "It means fewer people would be on insurance actually, if...in the end...if there were...more people there they'd be under Medicaid. It's not a, for us, it has no decision one way or the other."

To clear up that answer, 27 News specifically asked the Governor if he was saying insurance companies did not benefit at all from his Medicaid decision, even though it meant more customers for them.

"In the end, I'm saying you had people before that were on a wait list. Those weren't folks that were affected one way or another by insurance out there. The fact is they weren't, to my knowledge, they haven't lobbied me personally or anybody in my administration on this," said Gov. Walker.
What is that gibberish?!

What it is is Walker's tell that he got caught off guard by the rare occasion that a reporter was actually doing investigative reporting instead of just regurgitating talking points. It also shows that Walker really can't operate outside of his tightly controlled and scripted talking points.

The saddest part of it all is not the corruption in itself. It's that this isn't shocking nor his biggest act of corruption.


  1. Scott Walker's nonsensical responses to WKOW's questions should be publicized far and wide. The insurance industry's $1.27 million investment stood to make them $350 million, with Walker throwing 72,000 unfortunate Wisconsinites to the private financial wolves.

    That's a lot of angry voting people and their families that Walker's politics has made to suffer. They have no interest at all in lowering healthcare costs. And when you consider the bad effects it has subsequently had on our state budget, it raises many more difficult questions. Dennis Smith mysteriously left the state; that lieutenant governor candidate allied with SKW that got caught up in John Doe 1 was put to work for Smith.
    Ask him for some answers.

    Walker is caught here on camera, red-handed and obviously unprepared for the questioning. These accountability questions need to be pounded in the next three weeks before November 4th.

  2. The Hospitals and their association were strong against Walker's refusal to accept medicaid funding. They knew it meant people would continue to flock to the ER for primary medical care. Walker bought them off with a big increase in DHS payments to hospitals. DHS payments offset the cost of treating the poor in the ER who cannot afford to pay the bill. ER treatment is the most expensive method possible to cover health care needs of the poor. DHS payments are state/federal medicaid dollars. Thus crooked Governor Walker was willing to give medicaid dollars to hospitals, but not to Badgercare.

    Someone should see what kind of money the hospital associations and hospital CEOs put in that lying thieving bastard Scott Walker's pockets.

  3. Walker said this story was "grasping at straws" and he was protecting the taxpayer. Bullshit. You were caught grasping at payola at the expense of the taxpayer.