Daily Archives: July 25, 2013

Is audit a payback for organizations opposing KanCare?

“This audit is the Brownback administration’s political payback for community opposition to the KanCare carve-in of developmental disability services,” said Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley (in photo), D-Topeka. He was complaining about an audit ordered this week by a legislative committee on whether conflicts of interest exist among more than two dozen organizations serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported. But Senate Majority Leader Terry Bruce, R-Hutchinson, said the audit is not politically motivated. “The goal of the audit is to explore a potentially serious problem and ensure the most vulnerable Kansans are receiving the best possible care,” he said. Tom Laing, executive director of InterHab, a statewide association of service providers, said he doesn’t object to the audit but wondered why lawmakers aren’t also concerned about possible conflicts of interest with the private insurance companies that manage KanCare. “If it’s a big deal, why aren’t you looking at it in every other area?” Laing said.

An ‘Ellison said, Pompeo said’ situation

In an ABC News interview highlighting his status as the first Muslim elected to Congress, Rep. Keith Ellison (in photo), D-Minn., mentioned a fellow House member who “said Muslim Americans are not condemning terrorism enough.” That was a reference to a June floor speech by Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita. Ellison’s anecdote continued: “And I said, ‘well, let me guarantee you, Muslims are condemning terrorism every day all the time…’ and I gave him a whole list, and he said, ‘Thanks for telling me, I didn’t know, I won’t be saying that again.’” Asked about the incident, Pompeo told The Eagle editorial board in a statement: “Rep. Ellison’s claim is wrong. I continue to believe that Islamic clerics in mosques and the madrassas around the world have an obligation to consistently denounce terrorism done in the name of their faith. While it is true that Rep. Ellison did complain to me on the House floor, it is a shame that he did so by simply repeating the comments of (the Council on American-Islamic Relations) and demanding I back down.”

Stark difference in how races view Zimmerman case

It’s not news that many whites and African-Americans viewed the George Zimmerman trial and verdict differently, but a Washington Post/ABC News poll shows how stark that difference is. When asked about the jury’s verdict finding Zimmerman not guilty in Trayvon Martin’s death, 51 percent of whites surveyed said they approved compared with only 9 percent of African-Americans. And while whites were divided on whether the shooting was justified – 33 percent said “yes,” 33 percent “no” and 32 percent were not sure – African-Americans were not divided, with 87 percent saying it wasn’t justified. On the broader issue of whether African-Americans and other minorities receive treatment equal to whites in the criminal justice system, 54 percent of whites said “yes” while only 8 percent of African-Americans did.