Gov. Rick Perry has a hatred for the Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare) that comes as natural as breathing to him, but it seems hate only goes so far when there's $100 million in federal funding on the table.
When U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius came to Texas a few weeks ago hoping to talk about the federal healthcare act, Perry shut that thing down quicker than a duck on a junebug. Sebelius was in Houston on Monday announcing a video contest to promote the program and Perry was still issuing statements as withering as the French guy in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
With all this disdain coming from that guy with the perfect political hair, it may come as a surprise that Perry is in talks with the Obama administration to get some federal money from the deal, but it's totally happening, according to Politico.
If things work out from the talks, Texas will get about $100 million through the healthcare law to care for the elderly and disabled. If the deal goes through, Texas will be able to claim enhanced Medicaid funding through the Community First Choice program, which would help an estimated 12,000 Texans in the first year of the program.
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It seems like a weird move for Perry, who has honed his national image on hating all things Obama (and being terrible at debating, but that's a whole other thing.)
Perry's camp issued a statement to Politico on the whole "talking" thing:
"Long before Obamacare was forced on the American people, Texas was implementing policies to provide those with intellectual disabilities more community options to enable them to live more independent lives, at a lower cost to taxpayers," the statement read. "The Texas Health and Human Services Commission will continue to move forward with these policies because they are right for our citizens and our state, regardless of whatever funding schemes may be found in Obamacare."
Translation: He can't get behind a law requiring people to buy health insurance, but taking federal money to help the elderly and disabled is a horse of a different color, and Perry is up for the ride.