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O'Neal blasts governor for GOP idea

House Speaker Mike O'Neal, R-Hutchinson, criticized Gov. Mark Parkinson for a budget fix that was the GOP's idea. That takes nerve — or amnesia. Last April, House Republicans proposed a budget based on Congress extending $131 million in increased Medicaid funding. At the time, The Eagle editorial board warned that relying on the Medicaid money was risky, because Congress might not approve it. But the final budget ended up including this money anyway. The Senate approved the extension Wednesday, though its prospects in the House are still uncertain. When it appeared last week that the extension wouldn't happen, O'Neal tried to blame the Parkinson administration for plugging in the budget assumption, which he called "very bad public policy."