Fletcher Screwed Nursing Homes

What, you thought Ernie Fletcher was history? Sorry. He and his cronies screwed things up so badly that we’ll be hearing about Ernie for decades to come. The man’s legacy is one of disgrace.

John Cheves is reporting that the Health and Family Services Cabinet is so broke nursing home inspectors can’t have their travel costs reimbursed.

In its final days, Gov. Ernie Fletcher’s administration warned the state’s nursing home inspectors that a “budget crisis” prevented them from being reimbursed for travel costs incurred on the job.

Inspectors also were warned that “there is NO MONEY in the budget at the present time,” so they should bring in pens and pencils from home and not use state paper to copy nursing home records unless “absolutely necessary.”

So much for that magical rainy day fund Ernest Lee used as a re-election tool. Thought our Commonwealth was in wonderful economic shape, Ernest?

David Adams reminds us of the Medicaid shortfall and looming pension fund disaster.

Guess Who

Guess which delusional U.S. Senator thinks Republicans will maintain their stranglehold on the Congress in 2008? And that’s with 23 Republican seats up for grabs and Democrats leading in most of the open seats.

Just how will they maintain their hold?

But on Wednesday he argued that the Republicans seeking reelection would be in strong positions because they have shaped a number of high-profile bills that have been sent to the president’s desk, such as the newly enacted energy law, and have blocked “terrible” bills, such as a mandate to bring troops home from Iraq.

Oh, by blocking “terrible bills” that provide health care for millions of children and refusing to allow the troops to come home.

Oh Snap Update Dept

Did you know you can now get all redneck and torn up in Lexington on Sundays? [H-L]

Would saintly Mitch McConnell blindly back a partisan and anti-voting rights hack to be our next elections watch dog? [NYT]

Harry Yonts is totally sorry for murdering that girl, driving under the influence and tampering with evidence at the scene of said murder. He’s totally sorry and should be forgiven! It was just a little frat party drinking, you know. [H-L]

Hal Rogers still loves dishing out the pork and barbecuing taxpayers as he kills the world. [C-J]

Henderson is afraid to talk about the affair. [Gleaner]

Jim Bunning is still holding presidential records hostage as he tries to write history. [SF Gate]

Tom Dorsey is perpetually years behind the rest of us. Did you know they make fancy things like high-def teevees? [C-J]

Kentucky’s Medicaid system is effed up and no one can save it. [KY Auditor]

Richard Henderson & Ancel Smith: Terrified of the Gays

The two Democratic State Representatives pre-filed legislation yesterday to ban universities from offering domestic partner benefits. Two Democrats.

Ancel Smith & Richard Henderson

19 other WORTHLESS DEMOCRATS have signed on in support of the proposed legislation, which Steve Beshear has repeatedly said he’d veto. Peep their names and contact information after the jump.

Read moreRichard Henderson & Ancel Smith: Terrified of the Gays

The Plain Truth from John Yarmuth

It’s hard not to like John Yarmuth. A year into his first-term as 3rd District Congressman, it’s obvious that he’s having a good time in Washington, but he’s also taking his job seriously. When he spoke to about 50 folks at Spalding University last night (a mix of journalists and students), he was eager and open in talking about his experiences. It almost felt like a family gathering (Yarmuth seems to get plenty of props from his colleagues for his media experience) where you catch up with the adventurous cousin who’s been away.

Yarmuth tells it like it is in a way that’s unusual in political circles. For one, he can admit mistakes, but he’s also willing to talk about the reasons behind his votes, even if those reasons are political. Before we get all “man-crush” on him, here are some of the topics he discussed:

Federal Shield Law: Yarmuth became a sponsor of the bill after he introduced himself, in a hallway, to Mike Pence (R-IN), who knew of Yarmuth’s publishing past and asked him to get involved. Yarmuth says that while the bill passed the House, it’s hung up in the Senate. The bill provides protections for reporters against being compelled to reveal confidential sources. Yarmuth is not a big fan of the way the Senate operates.

Read moreThe Plain Truth from John Yarmuth

Are cabinet secretaries overpaid?

You bet your momma they are.

While Steve Beshear may be struggling to lure Joyce Hagen into the Health Services Cabinet, we’ve gotta take issue with something Mark Hebert reported today.

Why are we paying cabinet secretaries upward of $300,000 per year? WHAT ON EARTH?!

This is state government. It’s not Fortune 500 America. We’re not trying to be competitive here.

It should be considered an honor to serve your government in such a capacity as secretary of a prominent cabinet. Being reluctant because you wouldn’t be paid enough is absolutely laughable and shameful. Anyone turning down a cabinet job because there’s not enough money in it for them should be cast aside and laughed out of the state. Anyone complaining about money in an upper-level state government job isn’t cut out to be in an upper-level government position. And they’re certainly not worthy of our beautiful Commonwealth.

Political Future? What? How bout the political past

Joe Biesk had a great story yesterday about Ernie Fletcher’s political future. The real meat of the story, though, is Ernie’s legacy. Rather, the events forever burned into memory that either cracked us up or horrified the world.

The “merit fiasco,” Hunter Bates inability to run for office because he wasn’t a Kentuckian, the U.S. Capitol airplane scare during Saint Ronnie’s funeral, the state health insurance disaster that nearly led to a massive strike, and his desire to bust up every union in the state with anti-union legislation. My, what an interesting legacy Ernest Lee leaves. He’ll never be forgotten.

Check it all out here.