Alabama declines $4.2B

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 12, 2014


It’s difficult to believe but our wealthy doctor in the governor’s office turned down $4.2 billion, (yes that’s billion with a “B”) in money from the federal government Alabama could have had to help provide health care for our state’s poor and elderly citizens over the next three years.

The governor’s refusal has cost Jefferson County over $340 million, Montgomery County over $150 million, Madison County over $75 million and Baldwin County over $25 million. Those are the projected amounts those counties would have gotten this year for Medicaid if the governor had agreed to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Yet, there’s another perspective to Medicaid expansion. It goes like this. An estimated 300,000 working Alabamians lack health insurance. These men and women earn more than the cutoff to qualify for the state’s Medicaid program, which is less than $24,000 a year for a family of four. They are too young to qualify for Medicare and too old to qualify for assistance of the children of the uninsured working poor. Purchasing private insurance is usually out of the question because of cost or availability or both.

While upholding the Affordable Care Act, the U.S. Supreme Court in ruled that states could decide whether or not to take the federal government’s offer to fund the expansion of state Medicaid programs. About 21 states have declined, including Alabama.

Alabama would have received an estimated $1.4 billion for each of the next three years, 100 percent from federal government, before starting to pay a percentage in outlying years.

Democrats ran from Obama

“Nationally, too many Democrats ran away from Obama, pretended he wasn’t there,” according too Montgomery Democrat and black leader Joe Reed. “Obama has made mistakes but he really has not gotten the credit he deserves. His policies pulled this country away from a Depression. He’s worked like hell to get us out of these wars,” Reed said.

Reed said he knows that Republicans and some whites will dismiss his view that Obama’s color has been the reason the GOP has done so well since 2010.

“I know I’m right. All you have to do is look at all those ads the Republicans ran, not against the Alabama Democrat running against them, but against Obama. Hell! They mentioned him so often that I expected to see his name on the ballot.”


Alabama opened as 6.5 point favorite

Not even the No. 1 team in the country coming to town is enough to make Alabama a betting underdog. The Tide opened Sunday as a 6.5-point favorite over Mississippi State, according to

It’s the 64th straight game in which Alabama has been a betting favorite, a streak that dates back to the 2009 SEC Championship but it marks the first time since 2007 that Alabama’s been favored by fewer than 10 points against the Bulldogs. The Tide hasn’t lost to Mississippi State since Nick Saban’s first season. In the last two meetings, Alabama was favored by more than 22 points. Alabama hasn’t been a single-digit favorite at home since it hosted LSU in 2011.

The Bulldogs have won just twice at Bryant-Denny Stadium in the last 50 years. Mississippi State routed UT-Martin on Saturday, 45-16, to enter 9-0 and atop the SEC West.


State’s residential sales continue up

Alabama residential sales during the third quarter, while sluggish, continued to gradually improve, up 3.3 percent compared to the same period a year earlier. This is an improvement over the 2.3 percent growth experienced in the second quarter of the year.

Total sales of 12,469 units represent the best third quarter since 2007 (15,051 units). With that said, third quarter sales are still 25.2 percent (was 25.0 percent last quarter) below the quarterly peak established in 2005 when 16,674 units were sold.

Bob Martin is editor and publisher of The Montgomery Independent. Email him at: