Governor Rick Scott’s disregard for the health of Floridians

Updated
By Michelle A.M. Brown and Dianne Cherry
Governor Rick Scott
Governor Rick Scott
R-Florida

A new PPP poll showed Americans have more love for colonoscopies than the Republican-led congress (58% - 31%), and Florida Republican Governor Rick Scott fares no better.

With approval rating hovering in the 30s  the governor has been taking a lot of heat—from both the Democrats and Republicans—for the way he’s been doing his job.

And public opinion could get worse.

Reports indicate that Scott—a leading voice against the Affordable Care Act (aka: Obamacare), has been purposely inflating the cost of implementing Medicaid expansion in the state. By his tally, it would cost the state of Florida $26 billion over 10 years—a gross exaggeration of the $1 billion estimate that state economists provided to the governor, and which he’s chosen to ignore.

So is it just that Mr. Scott is just that callous as to deny thousands of uninsured, low income families access to healthcare?

Well if history is any indication, it just might be.

Under his leadership, the state has been accused of warehousing disabled children in nursing homes—in order to save money on the costs of in-home care. And back in 2011, just hours after Scott participated in a Special Olympics event, the governor ordered cuts of up to 40% in programs for the disabled .

By his own admission, Mr. Scott’s own family financial hardships made regular visits to the physician difficult even as his younger brother struggled with a hip disease.

So what kind of person engages in this level of rank hypocrisy? According to Florida Congressman Alan Grayson, a “sick, cruel, sadistic” one. By Grayson’s account, “Tony Soprano could’ve done worse.”

Watch Martin’s interview with Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Fla., here:

Since the president’s victory in November, Governor Scott has taken a more conciliatory tone toward expanding Medicaid, even meeting with Health and Human Services Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius Monday.

And while he remains firmly behind the line in the sand, let’s hope for the sake of millions of needy Floridians, and maybe even the memory of the plight his own familiy faced, Governor Scott finds the courage to do the right thing, even for those who’d just rather get a colonoscopy.

Governor Rick Scott's disregard for the health of Floridians

Updated