The front page of today’s (June 19) Explorer certainly offered a study in contrasts between two men. First, there was the heartwarming feature story about the retirement of Safeway manager Mike Hennings, whom I don’t know but who sounded like a really compassionate, dedicated individual. On the other hand, there was the article about the new state budget and Medicaid expansion plan. Sen. Al Melvin was quoted bemoaning the fact that 15 rational Republicans had the audacity to seek a compromise with Democrats so the state could expand health care coverage to the needy at basically no cost to the state. (The federal government would pay for the bulk of the cost, with Arizona hospitals—who supported the expansion—picking up the rest.)
Sen. Melvin, unfortunately, is “my” state senator, so I’m well aware that his ranting is typical behavior and that he apparently doesn’t base his votes on good policy, but rather on political rhetoric. Rep. Adam Kwasman, who also unfortunately “represents” me, also is quoted in the article along the same lines as Sen. Melvin. Both men seem to think that the Republicans who broke from party lines in this most recent vote will be voted out of office in 2014 because they actually compromised in order to keep the state functioning. I hope it’s legislators like Melvin and Kwasman who will be defeated at the polls!