Nebraska Governor to Ben Nelson: Keep the money
Nebraska’s Republican governor has a stern message for Ben Nelson, the senior Democratic senator from his state: We don’t want Washington to cover all the costs of the proposed expansion of Medicaid under health care legislation.
“The last few days have made Nebraskans so angry that now it’s a matter of principle,” Gov. David Heineman told POLITICO. “The federal government can keep that money.”
Told about the governor’s comments, Nelson said: “If he wants to subject Nebraska to future liability — it’s his call.” And he called it “foolish,” because the money wouldn’t be available until several years down the road, when other states would almost certainly lobby to get increased federal aid.
Nelson is engaged in a tense war of words with his home-state governor over his health care vote and the Medicaid deal he helped secure for their state, a signal that Nelson’s political opponents plan to bloody him up for his health-care stand — and that could impact his standing ahead of his 2012 reelection campaign.