Senator calls colleagues racist, dodges questions
BATON ROUGE - Republicans and Gov. Bobby Jindal called for a New Orleans state senator to apologize for her recent accusations that opposition to expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act was based in racism.
Senator Karen Carter-Peterson said Monday her colleagues in the Senate opposed President Obama's reform plan because he's black.
"It's not about how many federal dollars we can receive. It's not about that. You ready? It's about race. No, nobody wants to talk about that," Carter-Peterson said to others in the Senate chamber.
On Wednesday the senator dodged News 2 cameras seeking comment, and walked back into the Capitol to an area where media is not allowed.
In an exclusive interview with News 2, Gov. Jindal called her comments a political game.
"There's a way to have that debate. There's a way to express your opinion without name calling, without calling people a racist," Jindal said. "I'd hope the senator would apologize. I'd hope she'd go to the well and retract her comments."
Jindal and Republicans oppose expanding the state's Medicaid program using federal dollars because they believe it would put a burden on the state's already oversized budget.