Somehow I missed this when it was in the Charleston Business Review way back in January — until Burl, all the way from Hawaii, brought it to our attention today:
Rep. Kris Crawford, a Republican from Florence and also an emergency room doctor, supports the expansion but expects the Republican caucus to vote as a block against the Medicaid expansion.
“The politics are going to overwhelm the policy. It is good politics to oppose the black guy in the White House right now, especially for the Republican Party,” Crawford said.
Well, he certainly pegged that. The House did indeed do the totally irrational thing and reject Medicaid. Which makes this prophetic statement from a GOP lawmaker — and you did notice the part about him being a Republican, right? — particularly noteworthy.
Why is he so out of step with his caucus? Because he’s a doctor, so he knows better.
That’s chapter one of our story. Chapter two is that this week, Rep. Crawford fulfilled his own prophecy by voting along with his party on the issue. But then, so did all but one Democrat:
Crawford voted against accepting the money on Wednesday because it was proposed as part of the state’s budget — which he says is not the right place to do it. Instead, he wants to propose separate legislation later this year, and he worried that if he voted with the Democrats on the budget none of his Republican colleagues would support him…
Meanwhile, Dick Harpootlian has castigated Crawford for the wrong thing, referring to his “the racist and inexcusable comments by Rep. Kris Crawford regarding Medicaid expansion.
I tend to agree with Todd Rutherford, who said, “I am never bothered by someone stating the truth.”
Meanwhile, Crawford has baked down on the more inflammatory part of his comment, but not on the general thrust:
In an interview on Thursday, Crawford said his vote on the state budget was political, but said it had nothing to do with race — noting that if he had to do it over again, he “might pick different words.” But he stood behind the larger point of his comments, criticizing Haley and the House Republican Caucus for voting against the expansion purely because a Democratic president is for it.