How to get a federal health-care waiver (Hint: it involves former government health-policy officials) 

This filing just came across the old Lobbying Disclosure Act Database:

Client: State of Oregon
Lobbying Firm: Alston & Bird
Issue: "Assisting the State of Oregon to obtain a waiver for the states Medicaid program."
Lobbyists: Thomas Scully, former administrator of the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services; and Stephanie Kennan, former health-policy director for Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore.

Now, this is about a Medicaid waiver, not an ObamaCare waiver, but the same dynamic is at play: Congress imposes mandates on other entities, but gives bureaucrats the power to waive those mandates. To get such a waiver, you hire the people who used to administer or who helped craft the policies.

So who's the net winner? The politicians and bureaucrats who craft policies and wield power, because this combination of massive government power and wide bureaucratic discretion creates huge demand for revolving-door lobbyists.

It's another reason Obama's legislative agenda, including bailouts, stimulus, ObamaCare, Dodd-Frank, tobacco regulation, and more, necessarily fosters more corruption and cronyism.

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Timothy P. Carney

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