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Nebraska U.S. senator to Schwarzenegger: 'Join me'

January 25, 2010 |  4:31 pm

It seems U.S. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) may still be a little irked about getting called out in Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's State of the State speech earlier this month for the extra money he secured for Nebraska in the national healthcare bill. You'll recall Schwarzenegger said of the senator from the Cornhusker state: "He got the corn; we got the husk.''

Today Nelson, a former governor himself, said on the Senate floor that governors should be supporting his resistance to unfunded federal mandates. He suggested that the real motive of critics like Schwarzenegger is to kill healthcare reform.

Without mentioning Schwarzenegger, Nelson asked why his critics weren't reacting to "the real issue . . . the effects of another unfunded federal mandate?"

"The reason is that all along they've wanted to derail health reform,'' he said. "Misrepresenting this issue would help that goal . . . . It was too easy, too convenient to come up with a catchy name and to impugn motives.

"Rather than criticize me, others should join me in fighting the war to stop all of these burdens on the states. It's an effort I'd welcome the governors to join, too.''

Perhaps Schwarzenegger, on his next trip to Washington, should stop in and see Nelson.

-- Richard Simon in Washington

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