Republican healthcare policy is incredibly unpopular, which is acting as a drag on their marginal candidates. Their solution is straightforward — lie their asses off:
Health care keeps coming up in the approach to the 2018 midterms. And Republicans keep deceiving the public about it, because they are desperate to show that they didn’t try to strip away protections for people with pre-existing conditions when, in fact, they did.
On Monday evening, it was Martha McSally’s turn. McSally, GOP nominee for Arizona’s open Senate seat, currently serves in the House. Last year, she voted for her party’s bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, including regulations that block insurers from discriminating against people with pre-existing conditions.
In a closed-door meeting on the day of the vote, McSally reportedly stood up and told colleagues that it was time to get this “f**king thing” done.
One year later, the vote and the quote have become political liabilities. McSally’s opponent, House Democrat Krysten Sinema, cites them constantly as proof that McSally would leave some people with cancer, diabetes and other conditions unable to get coverage.
That doesn’t sit well with voters, according to polls ― and so, when the subject came up Monday during a televised debate between the two, McSally did what so many other Republicans facing similar charges have done.
McSally insisted that Sinema’s criticisms were unfair.
“I voted to protect people with pre-existing conditions,” McSally said. “We cannot go back to where we were before Obamacare, where people were one diagnosis away from going bankrupt, because they could not get access to health care.”
McSally went on to accuse Sinema of lying ― three separate times. But McSally was the one rewriting history.
Republicans could defend their position honestly by saying they believe pre-existing condition protections and other Affordable Care Act provisions inevitably do more harm than good. Instead, McSally and her comrades
Instead, McSally and her comrades keep suggesting they want to preserve the kinds of guarantees that current law provides, even though independent analysts and experts have debunked them repeatedly.
One thing that this highlights is how truly crazy it was that many liberal leaders and pundits decided the best rhetorical strategy for selling the ACA was to lie about Republicans supporting its goals rather than telling the truth about Republican health care policy preferences. Thankfully, they seem to have abandoned this approach but I have never understood what the thinking was.
Admittedly, it would be even easier to point out how awful Republicans were on health care if only the Heritage Foundation had released a heavily hyped plan revealing the actual Republican goals of ending Medicaid/Medicare, employer-provided insurance, and private insurance for anything but medical catastrophes!