McSally’s Contortions on Obamacare

Representative Martha McSally and US President Donald Trump arrive at a "Make America Great" rally in Mesa, Arizona on October 19, 2018. - US President Donald Trump said Friday, October 19, 2018, that he found credible Saudi Arabia's assertion that dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi died as a result of a fight. (Photo by Nicholas Kamm / AFP) (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
McSally is going to want to talk about anything other than healthcare over the next 18 months.
She probably has a solidly researched explanation of why she lost the last election by now, and it probably hews pretty close to reality, part of which is that her Obamacare stance cost her critically in the election.

BTW, if someone wants to send us a copy of McSally’s after action report on the election… please do 🙂

In 2017, now-Arizona Sen. Martha McSally really, really wanted to repeal Obamacare. McSally, then a congresswoman, reportedly stood up in the middle of a GOP conference meeting and urged her colleagues to vote for a bill to gut the signature Democratic domestic policy achievement of the past decade, telling them to get this “fucking thing” done.

McSally, who later lost a Senate race for one of Arizona’s seats before being appointed to the other, now has a different outlook. “It’s not about government-run health care or about repealing Obamacare in its entirety,” she said in a campaign video earlier this month. “It’s about bringing the cost down.”

That’s quite the pragmatic change of attitude for “Let’s get this fucking thing done” McSally. Could we ::gasp:: have some sort of incrementalism and deliberation in our healthcare policy?

Instead of trying to constantly blow it up completely, does McSally now want to make some constructive changes to the ACA?

You can bet that she’s desperate to do something to insulate herself from her past on this issue.

McSally is denying her change in tone marks a significant shift ― she said it was “fake news” when an interviewer asked her about it on Friday. But her new rhetoric, which comes after years of support for a full repeal of Obamacare and after a vote for a plan that would have increased costs and weakened protections for people with preexisting conditions, is representative of how Republican senators up for reelection in 2020 are approaching the law.

Health care remains the No. 1 issue for voters, according to public opinion polling, and Republicans remain on the defensive following a Democratic midterm romp.

The “fake news” marks what terrifies McSally: could the same issue that likely cost her Sinema’s seat in 2018, cost her Kelly’s future seat in 2020?

Yes. Absolutely, it could.

“Let’s get this fucking thing done” McSally’s proven and notorious hostility to the ACA isn’t something she can or will be allowed to walk away from.

If the Kelly campaign doesn’t run a significant portion of its contrast ads on pinning McSally to her past opposition to the ACA, his manager should be sued for incompetence.

The battle could play a key role in determining control of the Senate in 2020. McSally, for instance, is facing a stiff Democratic challenge from former astronaut Mark Kelly, who is married to former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Democrats need to pick up at least three seats to gain control of Congress’ upper chamber and have any hope of enacting the party’s agenda.

Asked to clarify her position on Obamacare last week, McSally told HuffPost she believed “the way Obamacare did it was not the way to do it.” However, she quickly acknowledged the changed politics surrounding the law and its impact on the country’s health care system, arguing it ought to be fixed rather than repealed outright.

“We’re now almost 10 years into it, so I deal with the world we’re in, and so let’s figure out an offramp that addresses some of the underlying issues about the cost of health care while also providing more access to health insurance for people on the individual market that still can’t afford health insurance that have preexisting conditions,” McSally said.

What? What does that word salad actually mean, if anything? Good to see she’s picked up the Beltway habit of only sounding like she’s talking.

What is an “offramp” in this context? A metaphor obviously, but for what? Some sort of compromise legislation that she can use to polish her own pragmatist cred? Something that will address pre-existing conditions in the ‘individual market’?

I don’t know, but it doesn’t sound very much like any sort of bold vision for health care in America. She’ll need to do better than this to get enough folks to forget that she’s “Let’s get this fucking thing done” McSally.

Democrats are offering voters a range of options, from very modest incrementalist changes to the ACA, to various public ACA market options using Medicare or Medicaid leading to universal coverage, to a transition to essentially a shored up Medicare programme for everyone.

We just can’t trust McSally with America’s healthcare. Step aside “Let’s get this fucking thing done” McSally: we’ve got this.

SOURCE: Vulnerable Republicans Who Backed Obamacare Repeal Aren’t As Fired Up About It Now. By Kevin Robillard and Igor Bobic.



  1. Of course, she does’t give a hoot about how much we taxpayers are footing her medical costs, since she has Tricare and get everything for FREE thanks to you and me. She does not use VA services. Retirees have different services frm those who just completed a contact and got out of military.Thoise in for 20 or more years get Tricare, a golden health care plan. No out of pocket costs.

Comments are closed.