Haslam needled in Memphis; ‘hopefully’ will submit Medicaid expansion plan to legislature next year

Excerpt from a Commercial Appeal article:
Gov. Bill Haslam stumped for the judicial selection amendment on the November ballot in a Friday visit to Memphis, responded to a group of protesters who aren’t happy with his budgeting priorities, and took a needle — a real one, not a political barb — in his left arm.

The latter came at an event at the Shelby County Health Department promoting flu shots. Haslam, Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell and state Department of Health Commissioner John Dreyzehner removed their jackets, rolled up their sleeves and took the vaccination.

Haslam smiled throughout the shot and joked when it was over. “I was kind of hoping for a Snoopy Band-Aid, though,” he said.

Outside, however, a dozen or so protesters weren’t joking. Calling themselves “Put the People First,” a group lobbied for “living wage jobs, democratic rights, public schools,” their sign said.

…Haslam didn’t cross paths with the protesters. But when asked about their issues, he said, “We do put people first.”

…(On Medicaid expansion) Haslam said the state is in discussions with federal officials and is “in the middle of trying to come up with a plan that we can present to Washington. Hopefully we’ll be able to do that this fall and then bring something back to the legislature for them to decide.”