Monday, May 19, 2014

Sen. Walter Blevins went to Alabama

State Senator Walter Blevins (D-Morehead) went on Alabama Public Radio to talk up ObamaCare in Kentucky, but he appears to have left his state Constitution at home:

I’m glad our governor has that right to do those things. We have a divided government right now, the Republicans control the Senate, the Democrats the House. The governor went ahead on his own and did an executive order, didn’t need the legislature, we weren’t in session at the time. There has been some talk about trying to defund it by the Republicans but they don’t have the votes in the House so it’s kind of at a standstill.”

The only thing Blevins got right is that the legislature was out of session when Beshear filed his executive order creating the Kentucky Health Benefit Exchange. Governors in Kentucky have the ability to issue temporary reorganization executive orders when the legislature is not in session, but that doesn't mean Beshear "didn't need the legislature."

In fact, KRS 12.028 makes clear that the opposite is true. Failure of the legislature to ratify the terms of such an executive order means that its provisions "shall be terminated" ninety days after the session ends. The "talk" about defunding not only broke out its "standstill" with 89 yes votes in the House, it passed the Senate 37-1, with Blevins voting for it.

Sen. Blevins is not up for re-election this year, but he should be made to explain his distortion of this issue in 2016.