Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Are Republicans Pro-Life or Not ??

Photo © by Jeff Dean.The Arizona Capitol - via Jeff Dean via WikipediaIn December and January, myself and many others began "raising cain" (see articles at the end of this post) about the fact that Arizona Governor Jan Brewer and the State's Legislature had decided to remove funding for organ transplants from the state's Medicaid program. Some members of the Arizona Legislature heard the outcry and began looking for ways to restore the funding. However, it now appears that any hope for restoring the funding is gone.

Republican State Representative John Kavanagh, who happens to be the House Appropriations Committee Chairman, was one of the ones looking into alternatives for restoring the funding. According to the's article Governor Grim Reaper's GOP Death Panel : No Transplant Funds for You !!, Kavanagh previously said that he thought the decision to eliminate the transplant funding may have been made based upon "flawed data." His plan was to have hearings to look at newer data which showed "better patient outcomes." He now says that the additional data shows the previous data "looks solid," so he's not gonna attempt to reinstate the funding. Kavanagh's reasoning - because, according to the statistics, he says, "Almost everybody (the transplant patients) died." Therefore, I have two questions for him :
  1. When did they die ? Was it 5 weeks after transplant, 5 months, 5 years, or 25 years ?
  2. Since we all die eventually whether we are a transplant patient or not, does he believe that NO money should be spent on healthcare ? What's his freakin' point ?
The really interesting part of this whole ordeal is that for years The Republican Party has claimed to be the pro-life party. However, it has been the Democrats in the Arizona Legislature who have introduced a half a dozen transplant funding related bills. One would have provided matching funds from the New Life Foundation to pay for transplants. However, Kavanagh and a fellow Republican, State Senator Andy Biggs who happens to be Chairman of the State Senate Appropriations Committee, have refused to hear them thereby killing the bills. Apparently, Governor Brewer's staff had told him she would not consider any legislation to restore the transplant funding. So, now who's the pro-life party ? It ain't the Elephants.

It's not often I see Democrats doing the right thing, but in this case they are. The negligent actions of Governor Brewer, Rep. Kavanagh, and Sen. Biggs, all Republicans, are a death sentence for Arizonians on Medicaid who need life-saving organ transplants. As I've said before, their actions make me ashamed to have ever called myself a Republican. If this government sanctioned suffering and dying of transplant patients is what The Republican Party considers being "pro-life," then I'm not sure I want anything to do with the party. "Pro-Life" means you believe in the sanctity of all human life, not just when it involves babies or healthy people. Many Republicans in my home state of Tennessee are currently railing against and attempting to nullify ObamaCare (more on that at a later date) without offering any alternatives that will provide a means for the chronically ill and others with pre-existing conditions to obtain health insurance. This too will lead to unnecessary suffering and dying at the hands of politicians. Republicans need to get their act together. In my opinion, when it comes to the issue of being "pro-life," many of them are nothing but hypocrites, and I am sick of it.
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