Saturday, November 3, 2018

There Are No Republican Centrists or Moderates

Tom MacArthur is a Republican from New Jersey who gained notoriety when one of his constituents yelled at him for lying about how he was going to protect the health insurance of the people in his district. You can be rest assured—he’s no moderate. He’s like every other Republican who has served in Congress for the last few years. Over and over again, he has voted to gut Obamacare and replace it with shrugs and empty promises.

This story tries to position him as a “centrist.” These people don’t exist anymore in the Republican Party. There isn’t a single GOPer holding office who can claim to be a centrist on the issue of health care.

Now, more than any other issue, preexisting conditions have dominated the airwaves in House and Senate races. Almost 55 percent of all Democratic ads from mid-September to mid-October mention health care, broadly speaking, according to a study by the Wesleyan Media Project, and almost every single one mentions the threat to preexisting conditions.

Republicans are just beginning the recriminations over that decision 18 months ago, particularly among those now facing the barrage of ads focusing on that move.

“The members who were calling for those changes really don’t care. And they’re very selfish, they always have been,” Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.), who voted for the bill, said in an interview last week outside his campaign headquarters in Miami.

Meadows, through a spokesman, declined to comment about the internal GOP debate in early 2017.

The fallout blasted far and wide, well beyond the few dozen members of the moderate Tuesday Group caucus who had been supportive of Walden’s original stance. Prominent centrist Reps. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.) [emphasis mine] and Fred Upton (R-Mich.), who negotiated the final details of the language on preexisting conditions, now find themselves in the fight of their political lives, under constant attack for their work with Meadows.

Meadows’s own Freedom Caucus colleagues, particularly Reps. Dave Brat (R-Va.) and Scott Perry (R-Pa.), find themselves in toss-up races and on the defensive about that May 2017 vote.

Perhaps worst of all, the Senate choked on its own ACA repeal bill and Obamacare is still the law of the land. House Republicans walked a political plank that got sawed off behind them, leading to false hope that the issue would fade away by Tuesday’s election.

Centrist? Really?

How can you be a centrist if your voting record doesn’t contain any evidence of actually being in the middle of the road?

MacArthur is a go-along to get-along kind of a guy. He is surrounded by people exactly like him. They don’t care about you and they never will. Every one of these members voted to take away health insurance for things like pre-existing conditions, again and again. For the last few months, they’ve been hiding and ducking from their own records. They were solidly against protecting pre-existing conditions and now they’re telling you it was all a dream.

Members like MacArthur can’t defend their votes. They can’t hold themselves up as champions of anything other than voting for what Paul Ryan (who is conveniently skipping town) told them to vote for. They won’t hold town hall meetings anymore. And they damned sure don’t want you to remember how they voted to end, eliminate, de-fund, kill, repeal, and destroy Obamacare:

Here’s MacArthur being reamed out, but the way. This should run on a permanent loop inside of his mind for all eternity.

Geoff Ginter, a certified medical assistant from Pine Beach and whose wife had cancer, took to the microphone to angrily confront MacArthur at a Willingoboro, N.J. town hall meeting.

Hell, Geoff Ginter should have run against MacArthur this year. He would have won.

There are no centrists. No moderates. No one in the middle. No one on the fence. They are all complicit in the destruction of our health care and they have enabled Trump to destroy our democracy.

Vote all of them out. Never vote another one of them in. We can do this. We only have a few more days. We can win. We can win this for the people that aren’t here anymore. We have to do this.

UPDATE: I re-wrote this post because, in my anger, I used too many cuss words. For the last decade, I have watched this fight unfold, and I have read countless stories about the people affected by losing their healthcare insurance after getting it under the ACA. It infuriates me to see these lies being trotted out in the mid-terms. Hopefully, it reads a little better. If not, blame my inability to be articulate about how Republicans will gleefully hurt people up until it’s time for them to beg for their jobs back.

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