May 19, 2014 3:13 pm -

It’s almost as if Georgia Republicans have decided to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the War on Poverty by declaring war on poor people.  First by making it near impossible for future expansions of Medicaid:

House Bill 990 moves the authority to expand Medicaid out of the Governor’s office and over to lawmakers. In a state where conservative politics run deep, HB 990 is Governor Deal’s clever way of way of ensuring Medicaid expansion will never get passed, and abdicating all responsibility for the health and economic consequences that will surely result. The second bill, HB 943, restricts state and local agencies and their employees from advocating for Medicaid expansion, bans the creation of a state health insurance exchange, and prohibits the University of Georgia from continuing its navigator program once its original federal grant expires in August. The University’s navigators have been working throughout the state – especially in underserved rural areas – to help demystify the ACA, assist individuals in gaining coverage on the national exchange, and help those who already qualify for Medicaid to enroll.

This comes on top of a series of other recent policy decisions:

To make matters worse, lawmakers in Georgia have been systematically dismantling the state’s social safety net. Of the 300,000 Georgian families living below the poverty line, only 19,000 receive TANF and more than three quarters of those cases involve children only. That means that fewer than seven percent of low-income Georgians are able to get the welfare assistance they badly need. On the same day that Governor Deal signed the aforementioned bills, he also signed HB 772, requiring certain individuals to pass – and foot the bill for – a drug test before receiving welfare and food stamps. That bill is thought to be the nation’s most stringent when it comes to public assistance.

Happy 50th: War on Poverty!

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

No responses to Georgia’s War On The Poor

  1. DetroitSam May 19th, 2014 at 11:52 pm

    Many of the 300,000 Georgians losing benefits are white, low info, uneducated and undereducated. These people make up the republican base in GA and the other southern states who are not smart enough to understand that they are included in the 300,000 number and are poor. You see, it is “those people”, meaning minorities.
    In addition to believing that they are in some class other than poor, that somehow the welfare benefits they receive are really not welfare because they are not “those people”, they hate President Obama.
    This will guarantee that they trample to the polls to vote for the very politicians who want to take away what little they have. They just might drive/run over the neighborhood children getting to the polls to vote against their own best interest.