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McConnellCare: Take Health Insurance Away from 520,000 and Send Them to the ER Instead

October 15, 2014

In a midterm campaign filled with affronts to voters and reality alike, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell reached a new low in last night's Kentucky Senate debate. Declaring once again that the Affordable Care Act should be repealed "root and branch," McConnell pretended nothing would happen as a result to the 520,000 Kentuckians whose new health insurance was made possible only by federal subsidies and expansion of Medicaid. Instead, McConnell said the Kynect program's "website can continue," continue that is, with no insurance plans to sell to customers who could no longer afford them regardless.

All of which means Senator Mitch McConnell--the man who proclaimed the GOP's 2010 midterm campaign slogan "will be 'repeal and replace', 'repeal and replace'"--is advocating President Bush's health care plan over President Obama's. As Bush explained to an audience in Cleveland in 2007:

"I mean, people have access to health care in America. After all, you just go to an emergency room."

Mitch McConnell couldn't agree more. He lectured David Gregory in July 2009 (around the 4:54 mark above) on that very point, almost a year before the passage of the Affordable Care Act:

GREGORY: Do you think it's a moral issue that 47 million Americans go without health insurance?
McCONNELL: Well, they don't go without health care. It's not the most efficient way to provide it. As we know, the doctors in the hospitals are sworn to provide health care. We all agree it is not the most efficient way to provide health care to find somebody only in the emergency room and then pass those costs on to those who are paying for insurance. So it is important, I think, to reduce the number of uninsured. The question is, what is the best way to do that?

Five years later, would-be Senate Majority Leader McConnell's answer is to strip 500,000 of his constituents--12 percent of Kentucky's population--of their health insurance. Instead, they can go to a website that can do nothing for them on their way to an emergency room which must.
For more background, see "Mitch McConnell's Deadly Lies about Obamacare."


Jon Perr
Jon Perr is a technology marketing consultant and product strategist who writes about American politics and public policy.

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