Thursday, April 16, 2015

Kentucky GOP delegation pounces on Comer, Heiner

A letter signed by nearly all Kentucky's entire Republican congressional delegation and delivered today took aim directly at gubernatorial candidates Hal Heiner and James Comer. The letter also invited all gubernatorial candidates to a post-election "Unity Rally" May 30 in Frankfort at GOP Headquarters.

"It is absolutely essential that we challenge a government-run healthcare system that is limiting choices and driving up costs for so many of our fellow citizens," the letter explained.

Comer and Heiner have been inconsistent at best in challenging the ObamaCare government-run healthcare system beginning last summer when they both told the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce they would take no action against the Kynect health insurance "exchange" which inspired another candidate to join the race. Both then reiterated their ambivalence in February in a national publication.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Heiner, Comer: Republicans made us do it

Gubernatorial candidates James Comer and Hal Heiner told the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce last summer they would do nothing to shut down ObamaCare's Kynect program in Kentucky. This February, they both told National Journal the same thing. They've both bristled at criticism received for going squishy on this key topic, but at least until now they haven't blamed other Republicans for their bad decisions.

Enter April and the issues of pensions and guns.

Last week, Comer shocked and awed primary election voters when he was asked by the Courier Journal's Joe Gerth why he voted himself a half million dollar pension gift from taxpayers when he was a legislator:

When asked why he voted for the bill to begin with, Comer hesitated for eight seconds. “Well, you know, there’s, it’s, the a, that was a, clearly a bad vote,” he said, before noting that Senate President Robert Stivers and current U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie voted for it.

When asked what he saw in the bill that made him like it in 2005, Comer said, “You know, ... I can’t remember that far back.”

That was last week. Then today, Heiner's campaign blamed a bad vote he made on banning guns on "ten other Republicans" who did the same.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Comer: send Heiner to jail for five years

Republican gubernatorial candidate James Comer has figured out one way to beat Hal Heiner. He wants to send him to jail.

When a 501(c)(4) group called Citizens for Sound Government started running an ad attacking Comer for padding his pension in the legislature and for collecting federal farm subsidies, Comer responded as if the attacks came directly from Heiner himself. If true, that's a big problem.

"It's very discouraging Heiner would break his pledge to run a positive campaign," Comer told CN2 Politics. "I have a theory of who that donor may be (to Citizens for Sound Government.) It may be the same donor in his campaign."

Comer's clear suggestion that the 501(c)(4) ad was made in coordination with Heiner, would be an in-kind contribution under KRS 121.015 and subject to a $1000 limit under KRS 121.150. Under KRS 121.990(3), such a violation of contribution limits by Heiner would be a Class D Felony which could, under KRS 121.990(4), result in the Republican Party of Kentucky not having a nominee on the general election ballot if Heiner were nominated and removed after a successful complaint by the Democratic nominee.

Comer and Heiner should talk about this nonsense a lot more between now and May 19.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Anthem doubles 2015 small group ObamaCare rate hike

Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield small group health plans increased their customers' premiums 7.1% this past January 1, presumably for all of 2015. But it won't stay that way.

Anthem has requested an additional six percent from the Kentucky Department of Insurance, which routinely rubber-stamps such applications. The increase is set to take effect July 1.

If you are keeping score at home, that's a 13.1% increase for the largest small group health insurer in Kentucky in 2015 amid repeated claims from Obamacrats of the health law's great success.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Will T. Scott parachutes into lead

Gubernatorial candidate and former Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Will T. Scott will perform a 3500 foot parachute jump to honor Kentucky's veterans on Monday, March 16 at 11 am ET in Elizabethtown, KY. The jump will take place at Skydive Kentucky, Elizabethtown Airport, 1824 Kitty Hawk Drive in Elizabethtown.

The jump will take place promptly at 11 am ET (weather permitting -- may have to wait briefly for 3500 foot ceiling). After the jump, Justice Scott and his running mate Sheriff Rodney Coffey will lay out their Kentucky Veterans Platform, including the following: 

The Scott-Coffey Administration's veteran-friendly focus will provide enhanced job preferences for veterans. Scott will continue his efforts and support for Kentucky Supreme Court Veterans treatment courts he helped build for veterans' "unseen" wounds. Scott and Coffey will work to enact a charitable property tax exemption for veterans' non-profit lodges like those in Ohio. Scott and Coffey will build veterans cemeteries in far western Kentucky and far south-eastern Kentucky. 

Scott and Coffey will announce and discuss their Kentucky Korean and Vietnam veterans "Coming Home March" for the afternoon of December 8, 2015 immediately following the swearing in of our next Governor and Lieutenant Governor. All Kentucky Korean and Vietnam war veterans will be encouraged to assemble at the Old Transportation Building Plaza in Frankfort and thereafter walk, march or ride (with or without assistance) up through Capitol Avenue to the Capitol steps, to there be received and welcomed home by a respected national figure and finally thanked for their service and dismissed. 

"After 61 years and 45 years, we are finally coming home," Scott said.

They will also announce and discuss Sheriff Coffey's charitable Wounded Warriors bicycle ride across Kentucky from Ashland to Paducah in April to raise money locally for Wounded Warriors projects.

Friday, March 06, 2015

Will T. Scott: reduce state healthcare regulation

In this time of great upheaval over ObamaCare, Kentucky should repeal state laws limiting the supply of medical services, specifically the "certificate of need" program, former Supreme Court Justice Will T. Scott said.

Repealing certificate of need laws would allow medical providers to expand services without first seeking state government approval. 

"If more government control could make healthcare less expensive, Kentucky would have the cheapest care in the world," Scott said. "Instead, we have regulated ourselves into an expensive mess."

"The federal government gave up on certificate of need in 1987 because they found it did not protect consumers. Our people are my highest priority and I encourage my opponents to speak up on this issue."

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Obama attorney: taxing power for me, but not for thee

In U.S. Supreme Court oral arguments today, ObamaCare attorney Donald Verrilli argued the IRS has the power to mandate ObamaCare taxes and subsidies even when the law does not authorize such action. This power, of course, is found nowhere in the U.S. Constitution or in federal statute.

It simply does not exist, except in the minds of Obamacrats. So, Verrilli maintains, if President Obama wants his IRS to violate the letter and the spirit of the social contract between government and the people in order to tax and subsidize where no such authority exists, that's just fine.

But apparently that's either just a one way street or a power belonging only to Obama.

When Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts asked Verrilli today if a future administration hostile to ObamaCare could decide to revoke the taxes and subsidies he wants them to impose unilaterally now, he said they could not.

If the U.S. Supreme Court rules the IRS needs congressional approval to enforce ObamaCare mandates, taxes and subsidies, the law will effectively collapse right away in most states.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Anthem joins the mid-year rate increase parade

With ObamaCare beneficiaries Kentucky Health Cooperative and Time Insurance Company gaining quiet premium increases in recent weeks, the largest health insurer in the state wants its piece of the pie too.

Anthem Health Plans has requested a "base rate change" effective July 1, but the Department of Insurance's public web site does not specify yet the amount of increase sought. The "Consumer Protection" people at DOI said they would divulge the amount of the increase on Monday.

This is a tax increase like the other ObamaCare tax increases. What's worse, consumers locked into ObamaCare plans no longer have the freedom to drop out their health plans when faced with one of these mid-year increases without becoming subject to the ever-increasing mandated coverage tax.  Frankfort Obamacrats will claim the state Insurance Code gives DOI the right to levy such a tax on Kentuckians whenever they wish, but that only makes it more infuriating.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Will Kentucky ObamaCare melt further after temperatures thaw?

A minor health insurance player in Kentucky just received quiet approval from state insurance bureaucrats to further gouge consumers just as Gov. Beshear triggered a state law designed to prohibit price gouging for other consumer goods. The timing of this price increase suggests other health insurers may soon follow suit.

Time Insurance Company health coverage premiums will increase nine percent in Kentucky on May 1. This comes after Time's fifteen percent increase took effect January 1. And this comes immediately on the heels of Kentucky's largest ObamaCare health insurer receiving multiple rate increases in quick succession.

Late last year, just as the Kentucky Health Cooperative was making headlines for sucking down tens of millions more in federal bailout funds and sacking consumer advocates, it requested a 9.9% rate increase in June and got a fifteen percent increase in September. They came back in October and increased that to twenty percent with a quick assist from the Kentucky Department of Insurance.

We'll be on the lookout for more rate increases in the weeks ahead.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Matt Bevin fell for ObamaCare's next big lie

We all know by now that President Barack Obama was lying when he said if you like your health insurance you can keep it, but Kentucky gubernatorial candidate Matt Bevin apparently didn't get the memo about another lie.

There is no provision in the so-called "Affordable Care Act" for states dumb enough to accept the Medicaid expansion to later rescind their acceptance despite presidential claims to the contrary designed to suck in the unsuspecting. Bevin should have known this. His claim that he would cancel out the Medicaid expansion if he is elected governor holds no water.

Former Kentucky Supreme Court Justice Will T. Scott made headlines last month when he became the first Republican gubernatorial candidate to announce that he would take action to cancel Kynect, the state's ObamaCare health benefit "exchange." Fellow candidates James Comer and Hal Heiner subsequently flip-flopped from their prior positions that they would leave the exchange intact.