So in the middle of the biggest global economic crisis, Ohio GOP Gubernatorial candidate/State Senator Kevin Coughlin believes the three most important issues facing Ohioans are:
- Making sure the Republicans keep control over the Apportionment Board.
- Making sure the General Assembly express its disproval over non-existent federal legislation that died in committee under the last Congress (which was also Democratically controlled.)
- Making sure Ohio's constitution prevents non-existent proposals for single payer health care from working.
Basically, the entire rationale for his campaign is to be the Anti-Obama. He has no solutions. No ideas. Without Obama and the Democrats in Congress, Kevin Coughlin cannot politically breathe. In fact, Democrats are so vital to his political survival that he has to actually invent Democratic proposals to survive on.
Did he really call requirements that legislative districts be drawn "compactly" as "goofy?" He apparently isn't aware that's a constitutional requirement for legislative districts. Coughlin should rename his redistricting constitutional amendment the "Mary Taylor Amendment." Because the only problem it solves is the Republican's problem that if only Mary Taylor wins a seat on the Apportionment Board, the Democrats will still have a majority on it. All Coughlin's amendment would do is ... well, what? Add more seats in what will still be a Democratic-majority Apportionment Board? He does know, by the way, that the people of Ohio don't elect the Speaker of the House, Senate President and the House and Senate minority caucus leaders?
Oh wait, he doesn't even know that districts are already constitutionally required to be compact.
The Freedom of Choice Act doesn't exist. It's a social conservative boogeyman used to raise campaign money and seem politically relevant. It's hardly on the fast track to the President's desk either. In the last Congress, it never even made it out of committee. Like almost all federal legislation it went nowhere. And yet, Coughlin believes one of the three most important things he's doing in the state legislature is sponsoring legislation to protest federal legislation that went nowhere whenever it's been introduced and presently doesn't even exist.
I should take Coughlin snipe hunting because he apparently loves going after things that don't exist. His third priority is another constitutional amendment to try to thwart something nobody is proposing: single-payer health care. It's downright agonizing to watch Coughlin try to conflate Obama's health insurance reform package into something it's clearly not. You can watch his body language and tell even he knows he's lying. He resorts to the old slippery slope cliche. First they required univeral private health insurance, then it became government single-payer. If that were the case, why doesn't Ohio have government provided single-payer auto insurance yet?
The ironic thing is that Coughlin doesn't realize that every tried and poll tested slam against single-payer government health care can be said about the current system. The insurance rep who denies coverage of medical procedure is just as much as a bureacrat interfering with "patient choice" whether they collect a government paycheck or one from Blue Cross/Blue Shield. I'll spare you the irony of a guy who talks about patient choice after just ranting about all Ohio has done to restrict a patient's constitutionally protected right to have an abortion.
With reimbursement rates, provider networks, etc. health insurance has done more to restrict patient choice than any government-run health care system has done. Of course, since Coughlin is able to choose among a variety of health care plans as a member of the State legislature (a choice most people in his district are denied but would be actually be given under Obama's health care proposal), choice is in the eye of the beholder.
Since most people cannot even "choose" the medical care they need because they lack insurance, and even more cannot "choose" the health care they and their doctor believe is medically necessary because of their health insurance, framing "patient choice" around Coughlin's constitutional amendment is nothing more than clever political marketing. I guess Coughlin has never heard about the federal supremacy clause, either?
This is the future leadership the Ohio Republican Party can offer this State: Clueless Coughlin and the Fox News host/Lehman Brothers executive. Pathetic.