Oh, my word. The recent editorial in this newspaper, “Medicaid expansion: LePage wins, Maine loses,” contains several false arguments.

* It only takes three paragraphs to accuse the tea party as the primary bad guy. Tea partiers are for following the Constitution, smaller government and lower taxes. People shouldn’t take the media’s word about the tea party. Until someone has attended a tea party meeting, they shouldn’t knock it.

* “Other governors put their rhetoric aside and took the money.” That’s why we are in this mess — taking federal dollars. Accepting federal money sounds great — until they yank the rug out, as happened this year. And Maine got stuck with the bill.

* “[Refusing expansion] will not help balance the state budget.” Flipping that straw man argument would mean accepting MaineCare will balance the budget. Twenty-seven percent of Mainers are on MaineCare and the expansion would add another 5.25 percent. With such trends, there will never be a balanced budget. Where does it end?

* Sunset date? Anyone believing 70,000 new recipients would suddenly and willingly drop out in three years is facing a serious reality challenge.

* “Refusing federal money won’t make those illnesses go away.” Who said it would?

* Who’s paying? People who think it’s the rich should point out all Maine’s “rich” to me. It’s going to be common Mainers footing the bill.

* Finally, nobody seems to remember the 2007 MaineCare expansion, which the Baldacci administration failed to fund appropriately. Until this month, hospitals were annually short-changed millions of dollars, hurting both people and Maine’s economy. Now the Legislature wants to expand MaineCare again, in the midst of the Recession?

Despite his word choices, I think Gov. Paul LePage is doing a great job.

Gregory Paquet


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