MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Opinion

January 30, 2013

THE PEOPLE SPEAK – Fallin’s actions have hurt Oklahomans

— Gov. Mary Fallin’s refusal to expand Medicaid coverage to low-income Oklahomans is typical of the way her actions have harmed Oklahomans. For example, in 2007 Fallin voted against raising the minimum wage above $5.15 per hour, where it had been for 10 years.

Then, she opposed House Resolution 4 which gave Medicare authority to negotiate with manufacturers for lower prescription drug prices. In other words, she voted to turn pricing of our prescription drugs over to pharmaceutical companies. (To reduce Medicare costs, here’s the place to start).

She also said “no” to expanding the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) for 55,000 low-income children in Oklahoma and four million nationwide.

She voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the first bill President Obama signed into law. Ledbetter was a hard worker who learned years later that she had lost more than $200,000 in salary, and more in pension and Social Security benefits because she had been paid much less than her male co-workers doing the same work. Finally, Fallin signed an emergency rule which gives insurance companies a pass on providing individual health insurance coverage for newborns from zero to one year old.

Surely Oklahomans don’t realize how badly Fallin’s actions have hurt many of us.

WANDA JO STAPLETON

Former State

Representative (1986-1996)

Oklahoma City

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