Just one more reason why we are not Republicans: We would find it impossible to be a part of a political party who decides that a 12 year old boy who was critically injured in a automobile crash and didn't have health insurance is a legitimate political target. Here is some background from the ABC News story linked to above:
With debate raging in Washington over children's health insurance, congressional Democrats found a new way to make their case for an expansion last weekend: Rather than have a senator or a congressman respond to President Bush's weekly radio address, they decided to have a child who was helped by the program speak directly to the public.
But the 12-year-old boy whom Democrats chose as their poster child is now at the center of a firestorm in Washington and beyond. Conservative bloggers who uncovered some details of the family's finances are blasting the family, calling the fact that they rely on federal insurance an example of how the State Children's Health Insurance Program has expanded beyond its original intent.
According to Senate Democratic aides, some bloggers have made repeated phone calls to the home of 12-year-old Graeme Frost, demanding information about his family's private life. On Monday, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid accused GOP leadership aides of "pushing falsehood" in an effort to distract from the political battle over S-CHIP.
Now, you are probably asking yourself why would even Republicans be this mean? Here is what they are alleging:
But after a largely positive story about Frost appeared in the Baltimore Sun, conservative-leaning bloggers began focusing on details of Frost's family situation. They suggested the family makes the conservative argument -- that the children's health insurance program has strayed from its original purpose by subsidizing healthcare for middle-class families, not just poor children.
A blogger on FreeRepublic.com discovered that Frost and his sister, Gemma, attend a private school where tuition costs $20,000 a year. Their father, Halsey, is a self-employed woodworker, meaning that if his family doesn’t have health insurance, it’s because Halsey Frost -- as his own boss -- chooses not to purchase it for himself.
"One has to wonder that if time and money can be found to remodel a home, send kids to exclusive private schools, purchase commercial property and run your own business . . . maybe money can be found for other things," a blogger with the handle "icwhatudo" wrote on FreeRepublic.
Only, of course, being Republicans they didn't bother to check out the facts. Here's what we are referring to:
But Manley say conservative bloggers didn't dig deep enough. It turns out that the Frost children attend Baltimore’s Park School on near-full scholarships; they pay roughly $500 per child per year in tuition, he said.
Like many small-business owners, Halsey Frost can't even afford to provide health insurance to himself, Manley said.
"Last year, the Frost's made $45,000 combined," Manley said. "Over the past few years they have made no more than $50,000 combined depending on Halsey's ability to find work."
The Frost family did not immediately return calls seeking comment.
Of course, facts don't manner to Washington, D.C., Republicans, whether the issue is starting a war in Iraq, passing reckless tax cuts, or vetoing children's health insurance, they just don't care.