Wyoming Liberty Group
“All power is inherent in the people . . .”
Wyo. Const. art. I, § 1.
“Every person may freely speak, write and publish on all subjects . . .”
Wyo. Const. art. I, § 20.
“Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech . . . or the right of the people to peaceably assemble . . .”
U.S. Const. amend. I.
Last year, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Citizens United v. FEC that corporations and labor unions are protected by the First Amendment and cannot be restricted from making independent expenditures in political campaigns. This ruling came in the wake of the Federal Election Commission’s attempt to restrict the broadcast of a documentary film about Hillary Clinton 30 days before a 2008 presidential primary election, in which Clinton was a candidate.
Judging by the efforts of legislators in Sacramento, solving California’s debt crisis seems as impossible as cold fusion. However, the cause of the state’s perpetual fiscal problems is as straightforward as its solution: spending grew faster than state GDP for at least 25 years. The main drivers behind excess growth in state spending are programs that are hallmarks of the welfare state.
Outgoing Gov. Dave Freudenthal signed the plan of operation for the “Healthy Frontiers” pilot project, on Nov. 30. This state-funded health care program purports to transition enrollees into jobs that provide private insurance for them. About 36 percent of Wyoming’s families might participate, should our legislature enact a permanent version.
HEALTHY FRONTIERS – AN ANALYSIS
The most substantial problem with this bill is its income eligibility cap. The formal threshold is 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Limit (FPL) but families who enroll at that income level can stay in the program even as their incomes rise. They are not forced to leave the program until they reach FPL=250. For a family of two parents with two children this amounts to $55,100 for 2010.
Recently , the US Supreme Court accepted a challenge to Arizona’s “Clean Elections” scheme. A program that dare not speak its own name – taxpayer funded elections – will test the mettle of the Court and its commitment to the First Amendment.