By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Friday, July 14, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) delayed the Senate’s impending vote on repealing and replacing Obamacare (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010). There remains enormous division of opinion on what to do with the troubled Affordable Care Act. The US Senate candidates in Alabama are similarly divided.
US Senator Luther Strange (R-Alabama) said on social media, “We’re going to do what’s necessary to take care of the most vulnerable in our society. It’s time to #repeal the burden of #Obamacare and deliver commonsense, conservative solutions.”
US Senate candidate Michael Hansen (D) said on social media, “I believe that Obamacare (ACA) has saved countless lives and is far superior to the preceding patchwork of consumer protections. I also believe it was a centrist attempt to preserve the status quo — which relies mostly on private insurance, largely provided by employers — and it did not fundamentally address the inequity in healthcare delivery. The ACA’s faults can’t be addressed with simple tweaks, we must fundamentally rethink healthcare if we want to control costs.”
US Senate candidate former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore (R) wrote, “Every single day, more and more Americans are being forced out of their health insurance plans due to skyrocketing premiums brought on by Obamacare. But the politicians in Washington continue to kick the can down the road.”
Judge Moore added, “At what point will we finally say enough is enough? The only way to end this long national nightmare is for the Republican establishment to stop playing political games, and fully repeal Obamacare as they promised to do for more than 8 years!”
Senate Candidate former US Attorney Doug Jones (D) wrote that, “Congress must continue to take a critical look at healthcare reform, but anything that gets my support must pass four tests:
- All Americans deserve the right to quality, affordable healthcare.
- No American should be unable to make ends meet from out-of-control medical bills.
- Pre-existing conditions should never be a reason to deny care or make care unaffordable.
- Preventative care should be a foundation of our health care system. It is inefficient and dangerous for Americans to rely on the emergency room to treat preventable illness.
I think these principles are critical to the many plans and options that will unfold. The ACA was not intended to be the final word on healthcare – but the improvements should strive toward universal coverage.”
Congressman and Senate candidate Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) said, “It’s possible that the Senate will do its job, do something on health care, and send it to the House of Representatives, where we would either reject it and move to a conference committee or accept it, but the indications are right now that the Senate is mightily struggling to come up with a plan to properly deal with the health care issue that is in front of us.”
Senate candidate Dr. Randy Brinson (R) said in a statement, “Obamacare was a pure Democrat bill. ‘McConnellcare’ is a pure Republican bill, and not even all of them support it. We don’t need another Republican or Democrat bill. We need an American bill, that members of both parties can, and will, support. I believe my common sense health care plan will be something that everyone can agree on.”
Rep. Brooks added, “We’ll see whether Mitch McConnell and the Senate can do its job. So far they have not been able to, and they’ve had seven months. They were sworn in in early January, just as we were in the House, and six months later we still don’t have that legislation. I’m puzzled about the impasse and why they weren’t working for the two or three or four months, for example, when we were working in the House, and finally got a bill out. They could have been doing the same thing in the Senate at the very same time.”
The Senate is expected to take up the issue again after Senator John McCain (R-Arizona) has a surgery performed and can return to work.