As we return to another episode of Emo Senator, Southern Minnesota's most watched telenovela, now in its extended summer primary season, we find our hero, Mike Parry, the Belle of Waseca County, being savagely attacked by Christian conservative Republican Allen Quist for an alleged indifference over Medicaid fraud.
The Post Bulletin's Heather Carlson reports in Quist blasts Parry for failing to investigate Medicaid fraud claim:
First District Congressional candidate Allen Quist is attacking Republican rival Mike Parry for not conducting a hearing to investigate claims of Medicaid fraud in Minnesota.
In an email sent to supporters, Quist claims Parry told members of the First District Republican's Central Committee earlier this month, "There is no fraud." He said that Parry failed in his duties as chairman of the Senate Government Innovation and Veterans Committee by not calling a hearing after federal investigations into potential Medicaid fraud in the state were launched. . . .
Parry's principle paladin points a finger back at Quist:
Parry campaign spokesman Ben Golnik said Quist is misrepresenting what Parry said and it "is outrageous" to suggest the senator from Waseca does not believe there is fraud in the state's Medicaid system.
While low-information voters in the GOP base may think that the two are arguing over which contender has the potential to be meanest to poor people who so don't deserve heath care because they are poor and obviously scamming someone, the "fraud" has to do with overpayments by the state to HMOs. Carlson explains:
Minnesota's program came to Grassley's attention after the state announced UCare was donating $30 million to the state. The federal government argued it was a reimbursement for Medicaid overpayments and that it should get half of the money. The state ended up agreeing to send half of the money to the federal government.
Minnesota Department of Human Services Commissioner Lucinda Jesson has said the problems with the state's Medicaid program stem from contracts with HMOs that were signed during Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty's administration.
Golnik tells Carlson that the overpayments aren't an indication of fraud, but Parry so too believes there is fraud in the system. There's more over at the PB; go read the whole story.
Earlier this year, the DFL tracker taped Allen Quist's press conferences about the allegations, posting the eight Youtube episode online. Mike Parry claims that the DFL only tracks him, and that this is an indication that the Democrats fear the Emo Senator. Fiddle-dee-dee!
Stay tuned for future episodes.
Image: Mike Parry, the Emo Senator, photoshopped by Tild.