Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical left and Islamic terrorism.
Senator John McCain won’t vote for ObamaCare repeal. He won’t vote for any health care bill that isn’t “bipartisan.” And any bipartisan bill will be ObamaCare plus something even worse.
If McCain won’t vote for a health care bill that isn’t bipartisan, he won’t vote for ObamaCare repeal.
That’s information that voters could have used when Senator McCain was running for reelection last year on a platform of repealing ObamaCare.
Back then, McCain’s first TV ad took a shot at ObamaCare. A TV ad declared, “John McCain is leading the fight to stop ObamaCare.”
It was right up there with his even more infamous 2010, “Complete the danged fence” ad.
"Obamacare is anything but affordable," one press release denounced a bill that was "rammed through Congress". And yet, McCain is now satisfied to keep it in place until Republicans agree to whatever Dem version of ObamaCare they ram through next. Call it McCainCare. It would be only too fitting.
What does McCainCare look like? It’s what happens when ObamaCare fails.
In Arizona, it means vanishing options and sharp rate hikes. It means one provider to a county. Or less. It means a disaster so bad that last September, McCain was touting a bill to protect Arizonans from the collapse of ObamaCare. But who will protect Arizonans from McCainCare? Not Senator McCain.
McCainCare is a stalemate over ObamaCare. Without the mandate, the collapse will come even quicker. Since McCain won’t vote for a non-Dem ObamaCare bill, that means either Democrats and the left-wing of the GOP will gather together enough votes for Son of ObamaCare. Or there will be McCainCare.
McCainCare will trap millions of Americans in a failing system even as Republicans get the blame. Son of ObamaCare, which could still just as easily be dubbed McCainCare, will restart the process again with a new failing system that will turn over the health care market, eliminate the health insurance that millions of Americans had been relying on, and then go on to fail and trap them in the rubble.
McCainCare or McCainCare, by any other name, will be a disaster. And it will be McCain’s fault.
There are bad laws that are caused by ideology, by errors and by miscalculations. But McCainCare won’t be the product of a political disagreement, but of years of shameless political dishonesty by a career politician. McCain lied to Arizonans over and over again. McCainCare is the consequence of his lies.
"I won’t stop fighting to repeal and replace," McCain declared during the last election. It would have been more accurate if he had admitted that he won’t stop fighting efforts to repeal ObamaCare.
Last year, Senator McCain introduced the Empowering Patients First Act in the Senate. EPFA was the Senate version of Tom Price's proposal. EPFA was endorsed by Paul Ryan and became the basis for the repeal push in Congress. Trump picked Price as his Health and Human Services Secretary.
There are serious problems with EPFA from a conservative standpoint, but it was McCain’s baby. McCain got out front as long as the repeal and replace effort would be nothing more than political theater.
EFPA contained variations of ideas that McCain had proposed back when he ran against Obama. McCain's adviser, who promoted the health care proposal, had come out in favor of a Senate repeal bill. Another adviser, who helped author the proposal, wrote an editorial titled, "Ten Reasons Why Every State Should Welcome the Graham/Cassidy/Heller/Johnson Health Reform Bill."
The men who helped shape McCain’s health care plans are supporting a health care bill he opposes.
Did McCain believe in his health care plan then as little as he believed in his own bill now?
How long has McCain been lying to Arizonans and Americans?
Senator McCain is entitled to his views. It’s a free country. And there are two parties. Unfortunately McCain is protecting a Democrat legislative agenda while serving as a Republican.
If McCain believes that socialized medicine is the health care solution we need, he has the right to advocate for it. But he ran for office, advocating for a more “capitalistic” approach.
Fighting to save ObamaCare is as capitalistic as North Korea.
McCain can believe whatever he pleases. What he isn’t entitled to do is lie to voters. And that’s what he has been doing for too long. Like Clark Kent transforming into Superman, every election John McCain runs into a phone booth and transforms into a Republican.
And then he doesn’t have to take any conservative positions again for another six years.
During elections, McCain will vow to fight illegal immigration or ObamaCare just long enough to fool voters who don’t pay enough attention to what happens in between elections.
The media and its leftist allies have fallen in love with Senator McCain all over again (after once denouncing him as a violent racist when he had the chutzpah to run against Obama) and words like “honorable” and “legacy” are being thrown around. They should be thrown right out.
Depending on your spot on the political spectrum, there are different ways to view ObamaCare. But there’s only one way to see a politician who lies over and over again for political gain.
There’s nothing honorable about that.
The honorable thing to do would have been to tell voters the truth. But McCain didn’t want to tell Arizonans what he really thought of ObamaCare when they could push a button and end his political career. Instead he waited until it would be years and years before they could get him out of office.
That was the same stunt that Senator McCain pulled with illegal immigration.
In 2010, McCain was promising to complete “the danged fence”. A few years later he had gotten busy on amnesty for illegal aliens. In 2016, McCain was promising to lead to fight against ObamaCare. A year later he’s leading the fight to keep ObamaCare. The only good thing that can be said about McCain’s strategic dishonesty is that the intervals between his elections and his betrayals have grown shorter.
Once upon a time, McCain deserved to be called, “honorable”. Unlike his friend, John Kerry, who threw away his medals in one shot, McCain threw away his honor slowly, year by year.
Now he has none left.
Senator McCain’s legacy will be McCainCare. It won’t be a bill that he introduced or voted on. Instead his legacy will be the misery he has caused by supporting a failed Dem health care status quo.
If Republicans can’t expand their presence in the Senate or thin out the RINO herd, McCainCare will live on. It will cast a shadow over the lives of millions of Americans. It will be a failed system that will haunt doctors, hospitals and patients. And it will be Senator John McCain’s ultimate legacy.