ICYMI: Senator Howell's Floor Speech on Medicaid Expansion & Being "Refreshed by the Voters"
RICHMOND -- Yesterday, Senator Janet Howell (D-Fairfax) addressed the Virginia Senate about what it means to be “refreshed by the voters.” The House was refreshed last November when voters took to the polls in record numbers to vote for a Medicaid expansion platform, resulting in an unprecedented net gain in 15 seats for the Democrats. Both a video and a transcript of Senator Howell's remarks can be found below:
In 1992, three of us who are still here arrived on the Senate Floor: the Senator from Portsmouth, the Senator from James City County, and myself. That was a really significant year for my side of the aisle, because we had lost a net of ten seats. Suddenly, the Republicans on the other side of the aisle had much more influence than they ever had before. There was a great Senator here, the majority leader at the time, a man named Hunter Andrews. He kept talking about, “We have been refreshed by the voters.” We’ve been refreshed by the voters. And when I think about what has happened on the other side of the Capitol is: They have been refreshed by the voters. Various delegates are responding in different ways and trying to absorb in their minds what the voters are telling them. I think many of them have decided that the voters are telling them to change their position on Medicaid expansion. On this side of the Capitol, we have not recently been refreshed by the voters. So we don’t have that kind of a sense of what we should be doing. I would suggest that in two years will be -- we will be -- and we will need to answer whether or not we have responded to the needs of the people of Virginia.
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