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Bob Marshall Strikes Down Medicaid Expansion Scheme

By Greg L | 22 March 2013 | 13th HOD District, Virginia Politics | 5 Comments

Once again Bob Marshall proves that he understands Virginia law better than anyone else in the General Assembly.  This time, Marshall suspected that the establishment of a “Medicaid Innovation and Reform Commission” that had the power to enroll the Commonwealth in an expansion of the federal medicaid program was a violation of the Constitution of Virginia. In an opinion handed down today by the Attorney General, indeed it is.

This opinion almost certainly forces Governor McDonnell to offer an amendment to the budget either eliminating or substantially altering the commission and the power it would have, and that is a clear victory for the rule of law.  To have the General Assembly delegate their legislative authority to a small committee where as few as six members might have final say over the size and scope of the Commonwealth’s entitlement programs is utterly absurd.  Had this scheme been allowed, the General Assembly could avoid any uncomfortable vote it wanted by simply granting the power to make a decision to a small committee, the members of which might not even be running for re-election.

Bob Marshall has been a fierce defender of the Constitution and the law over the years, usually butting heads with members of his own party when they stray from the principles that should be guiding them, and his win/loss record in this regard is tremendous.  Marshall suffers a considerable amount of political retaliation for this independent streak, being stripped of committee memberships and leadership positions as well as having his district redrawn in a way that wasn’t quite helpful to him during the last redistricting, but he’s clearly not wavering in his determination to support the rule of law no matter how punished he is for that.

One more significant request for an opinion remains from this session as to whether establishing different tax rates in different parts of the Commonwealth is a violation of the law, relating to the awful HB 2313 that established special tax rates in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads.  As far as I know no opinion has been rendered on that issue yet.  If Marshall goes two for two this year, he will have arguably impacted the outcome of this General Assembly session to a greater degree than even the Speaker of the House, just as he did the last time Richmond was trying to come up with a massive tax hike to feed our broken and terribly misused transportation funding beast.

My money’s on Bob.

UPDATE:  Good thing it is, because Marshall won on both opinions.  The special tax hike on NoVA is dead as well!

UPDATE 2: Here’s a link to the opinion on HB 2313.

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  1. S.R. Vaughan said on 22 Mar 2013 at 5:37 pm:
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    Yeah, Bob Marshall knows the law better than anyone else. Got it.

  2. The Bulletproof Monk said on 22 Mar 2013 at 7:37 pm:
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    Thank God we have unwavering fellows like Bob Marshall and Dick Black in the GA to stop this crap…..but at the same time, the vote has put a beacon of sunshine on the question… What in the world were some delegates , and quite a few other Senators thinking when they went afoul of the State Constitution?????

  3. VRC said on 22 Mar 2013 at 8:13 pm:
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    Despite relentless slings and arrows, Delegate Marshall never stops fighting for liberty, obsessively so. Even though a lot of mixed up folks out there don’t appreciate him, we all him a huge debt of gratitude.

  4. Tom Delancy said on 22 Mar 2013 at 9:29 pm:
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    Here’s the 83-17 House vote on the Budget Bill:


  5. VaMinuteman said on 12 Apr 2013 at 5:09 pm:
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    And I will continue to vote for Bob Marshall, for as long as he has the fight in him. It takes a lot to stand up to a political machine and decry what was so clearly wrong. Way to go, Bob.

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