Thursday, August 17, 2006


Just Call Me Willie Nelson

I'm on the road today, so blogging will be light. First, I have a breakfast meeting with Grover Norquist in Nashville. As with our blogger meeting with Grover many moons ago, I have no problem traveling the distance between KnoxVegas and Nashville to meet with one of the great political minds in America today.

The rest of the day is slated for Only, Tennessee, where I will try to convince an appointed client that it is in his best interests to appear in an East Tennessee court instead of fighting a transport order. I'm not too thrilled about my prospects, as better men than me have tried to accomplish this task and not been met with success.

In the meantime (and I apologize for not posting more this week on Bob Corker and such matters, as this has been our busiest week at work this year), I suggest the following reads:

The Undecided Philosopher takes on Wal-Mart

JIM Bryson for Tennessee Governor is happy that the candidate is podcasting

Music City Oracle posts on the class of Jimmy Naifeh

Terry Frank has some inside baseball on the lobbying for Lt. Governor.

Finally, Donna Locke submitted the following letter to the editor to the Tennessean. I'm not sure when or if that paper will publish it, but I will do so here.


The Editor:

One cannot grasp the full cost of illegal aliens to our health care system from testimony at congressional hearings, though U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Brentwood, and the others should be commended for trying. ("Illegal immigrants up ER costs, panel finds," Local News, Aug. 11)

Aside from emergency care to illegal aliens, hospitals provide emergency and other care to illegal aliens' U.S.-born children, who are counted as U.S. citizens and are potentially eligible for all government programs. Those kids are not counted as part of the care to illegal aliens but are a major consequence and cost of illegal immigration.

Additionally, many federal and state dollars, in every state, go to special medical clinics and other programs that may serve only or mainly illegal aliens and their children. Those programs include President Bush's faith-based initiatives.

We cannot deny that some hospitals in the border states have gone bankrupt and have closed because of the costs of treating illegal aliens. The hospital reps have said so. That situation has spread to the nation's interior. Hospitals that receive federal dollars are required to treat people regardless of legal status or ability to pay. Private hospitals that forgo federal dollars can turn people away, though they may treat a token number of uninsured or underinsured patients. In the end, uninsured or underinsured U.S. citizens end up the losers as the public hospitals go under because of this situation.

Donna Locke
Columbia, TN 38401

Safe travels Willie and thanks for the plug...
Sorry I missed you. I found out from from Steve Gill a few minutes before Grover was to show up and I had pland to be elsewhere.
Stacey -

I think Grover spoke with Steve, Ben Cunningham, and few other members of the conservative coalition on Wednesday night. Our breakfast with him was on Thursday morning.

In any case, we probably had the better event (no offense to anyone), because it was a very intimate setting with only a few of us there. We really got to ask questions about policy and campaigns that we might not have been able to ask in a bigger group, and it was truly educating.

If I hadn't been so daggone busy this past week, I would have worked to get more people there, but it didn't work out that way.

And, I WILL RETURN YOUR CALLS soon. I've just been swamped over the past few weeks. We do need to do lunch soon.


Thanks, Rob. No, The Tennessean didn't publish the letter. There's a pattern to this. :)

The paper, of course, seems to embrace the notion that the responsible in this country should continue to be responsible for the acts of the irresponsible in or from whatever country.
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