Last year, the Bush administration denied health coverage to millions of low-income children by vetoing expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) twice and issuing new rules to prevent states from expanding the kids’ health insurance program.
Now the Bush administration is going after Medicaid.
The New York Times reports that the Bush administration is telling states that have long been free to set their own Medicaid eligibility rules, they cannot offer Medicaid coverage to families with modest incomes.
To cover more children in low-income families—many of whom would have been eligible for coverage under the vetoed SCHIP bill—officials in Ohio, Oklahoma and Louisiana developed plans to expand Medicaid eligibility. But the Bush administration now is telling those states that expanding Medicaid is not allowed.
This just in from Rand Wilson, communications coordinator in the Center for Strategic Research, AFL-CIO Organizing Department.
Marking the largest private-sector organizing win in New Hampshire in decades, 600 customer service representatives employed by AT&T Government Solutions in Dover formed a new union with Local 1298 of the Communications Workers of America (CWA).
Barb Kucera, editor of Workday Minnesota, sends us the following, which also appeared on that great website.
While the Iowa caucuses are getting all the media attention, a special election Thursday in Minnesota Senate District 25 has shifted the balance of power in the state government.
The victory by Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party member Kevin Dahle also adds another labor leader to the ranks of union members serving in the Legislature.
Dahle garnered 6,802 votes—55 percent, compared with 5,225 (42 percent) for Republican Ray Cox. Dahle fills the seat vacated when Republican Tom Neuville resigned to become a judge.
The first votes of 2008 are in, and the winners of Iowa’s caucuses are Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) on the Democratic side and former Gov. Mike Huckabee (Ark.) on the Republican side. As the first contest of the 2008 presidential race, the Iowa caucuses set off what is sure to be a competitive primary process.
The record participation in these caucuses proves the demand for change in the country from the past seven years of the Bush administration’s anti-working family agenda. With the health care system in crisis and the economy failing working families, Iowa voters came out in unprecedented numbers to demand new policies and a new agenda.
AFL-CIO President John J. Sweeney had this to say about the remarkable participation in Iowa’s caucuses:
The amazing turnout in Iowa is a great sign that voters are determined to take our country in a new direction. The energy we’re seeing is an emphatic, exhilarating rejection of the Bush agenda.
Unemployment worsened to 5 percent—sinking a whopping three-tenths of a percentage point, from 4.7 percent in November, the largest single jump since the slowdown following Sept. 11, 2001.
Not even one week into the New Year, nearly seven years of the Bush administration has brought our nation the worst unemployment rate in two years, a stock market that lost more than 200 points on the first day of 2008 trading—its worst trading day since Sept. 11, 2001—and oil that reached the dreaded $100-per-barrel mark.
Heckuva job, Mr. President.
An extensive investigation by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer finds the threat diacetyl poses to workers may be more widespread than previously thought.
We’ve reported on the dangers that diacetyl, an artificial flavor additive used in microwave popcorn and other processed foods, presents to workers. The butter-flavored additive can cause bronchiolitis obliterans, a severe illness known as “popcorn lung.”
Over the past seven years, hundreds of workers in plants where diacetyl is produced or applied to food have developed the rare and sometimes fatal disease. Popcorn lung has been tied to three deaths and serious illness in at least 200 people. So far, doctors have not found a way to reverse the symptoms. A lung transplant is the only option after the symptoms set in.
By Doug Cunningham
[Obama]: “I’ll be a president who ends the tax breaks for companies that ship our jobs overseas and put a middle class tax cut into the pockets of working Americans who deserve it!”
Senator Barack Obama, who said Iowans voted for change and a new politics last night. Dennis Williams, Director of UAW Region 4, is thrilled by Obama’s victory.
[Williams]: “This is huge for Barack Obama. I think it says to our country – we want change. Were tired of the status quo. Barack Obama has a history of working for working men and women of this country. So I don’t think there’s any doubt in my mind at least that Barack will be a friend of working men and women and organized labor. he will champion workin’ people’s causes. And We need that in this country.”