Last week, I wrote about the Missouri Republican Establishment's plan to win a windfall for lobbyist Kit Bond via Senate candidate Jay Ashcroft. Not that the Establishment cares about Bond, but they want Medicaid expansion passed before they beg for money for 2016 from the Missouri Hospital Association and Chamber of Commerce. Well, the St. Louis Post Dispatch asked Ashcroft about the deal, and he couldn't quite bring himself to deny that he would pass Medicaid expansion if elected.
Noting Bond’s lobbying role, Tea Party leader Bill Hennessy alleged in a recent column that Ashcroft has already committed “to help push Obamacare in the Missouri Senate.”
Ashcroft laughed at that accusation.
“I haven’t agreed to anything with regard to Medicaid expansion,” he said.
If helping people get quality medical care is the goal, “Medicaid expansion is one way to do that, and I’m open to talking about that. But I’m afraid we’re focusing on one of the potential solutions instead of saying, ‘Here’s the problem, what are the whole myriad of solutions we could use?’”
So a Medicaid deal is still in play, Jay?
For the record, none of the Missouri US Congress Republicans who attended a fundraiser for Ashcroft have denied Kit Bond's influence in the event. Or on Ashcroft's last-minute decision to run.
I understand it will be difficult to fill John Lamping's shoes, but evading questions about backroom deals on Obamacare is a step in the wrong direction for Ashcroft.