Monday, November 23, 2009

Wyoming's future: from Equality State to Land of the Dumb & Sick

Digby recounts a Chris Matthews interview with Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour talking about how Mississippi has all the answers to our health care woes. An excerpt:

Barbour: ...candidly, a lot of Republicans, including me, believe it would be much better to let the states do some things like we've done in Mississippi where we've had serious tort reform and our medical liability reform has brought down insurance premiums by 60 percent in four years, we have reformed Medicaid so that we are saving the taxpayers money. We think let the states go for a while, see what works see what doesn't and then come together with a rational bill at the federal level is a better approach.

Mississippi rates 51 (out of 50 states plus DC) in health care ranking.

In the same ranking by The Commonwealth Fund, Wyoming ranks right in the middle at number 25 [].

Not great but not terrible. Our adjoining Rocky Mountain and High Plains states do a little better, with Montana at 18th, Utah at 19th, Colorado at 24th, Nebraska at 13 and South Dakota at 12. Wyoming's only neighbor that ranks lower is Idaho at 29.

I wonder how many Nebraskans and Montanans would trade their health care for that enjoyed by the lucky people of Mississippi? If Republicans ruled the world of health care reform, we could say "We’re all Mississippians now!" If we were still alive to do so.

This could be especially bad in Republican-controlled states such as Wyoming and Idaho if health care were left up to the states.

The South always ranks at the bottom in those categories that count, such as health care and education. They tend to send Republicans to D.C. to illuminate the rest of us on education and health care reform, not to mention the inerrancy of the Bible. If Wyoming’s delegation keeps voting with their Deep South counterparts, we too could be the land of the dumb and the sick. And we’d be praying like hell for something different.

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